Three 12-year-old boys in Serbia set a homeless man on fire, and he died from his burns several hours later, Tanjug news agency reported Wednesday.
The attack occurred in the northern Serbian town of Novi Sad, some 70 kilometres (40 miles) from the capital Belgrade.
The boys set fire to cardboard placed under a mattress on which the 52-year old man - identified only by the initials D.T. - had been sleeping, the report said.
The fire quickly spread to his clothes and body, leaving critical injuries. He was rushed to hospital but later succumbed to his wounds, it added.
Police questioned the suspects in the presence of their parents, but it is unlikely that the boys will be charged.
Under Serbia's criminal code, children under 14 cannot be prosecuted, Tanjug said.