A homeless man charged with setting a fire that killed five people at a vacant Los Angeles building was in the country illegally, and was arrested for drug possession days before the blaze.
Johnny Sanchez, 21, remains jailed without bail on five counts of murder. Prosecutors haven’t decided whether to seek the death penalty.
They allege Sanchez set the fire Monday after having a dispute with other people squatting at a former acupuncture clinic in the Westlake area near downtown.
Three men and two women died in the fire, which collapsed the roof of the two-story building and left the bodies buried in debris.
Sanchez, a Honduran citizen, was arrested in 2012 for illegally entering California, but he was released a week later after agents determined he had no criminal history or previous immigration violations….