updated 1/2/2011 5:51:46 PM ET 2011-01-02T22:51:46

Attempted murder charges have been filed against a Puerto Rico man who police say burned his parents and seven other relatives with a blowtorch.

The island's Justice Department says 45-year-old Justino Sanchez Diaz called a family meeting Saturday at his parents' home in the northern town of Florida, and then attacked.

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A statement from the department says the parents suffered severe burns and were hospitalized in critical condition.

The other seven were also being treated for their wounds but were not burned as severely.

The suspect was arrested and charged with nine counts of attempted murder. The Justice statement did not speculate on a possible motive.

It was not immediately clear Sunday if he had a lawyer.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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