TC Forensic Pty Ltd was incorporated in 1991 as a service provider to the insurance industry. Our chief activity is the determination of the causes of fires, and the laboratory analysis of fire debris samples for liquid petroleum accelerants. The proprietor, Tony Cafe is solely responsible for on site fire scene determinations as well as the laboratory analysis. Since its beginning TC Forensic has also provided additional scientific services under contract to government agencies and leading corporations.

Anthony Dennis CAFE
B. Appl.Sc. (UTS), M.Appl.Sc (UTS).

Member Royal Australian Chemical Institute

Professional Experience

  • Twenty years as a fire scene forensic examiner, conducting over 1500 fire scene examinations;.
  • Manager of the Geronimo Fire Investigation Laboratory, University of Technology, Sydney (1983-89), SGS Forensic (1990-91) and TC Forensic (1991-present). Conducted both an honours and masters thesis researching fire debris laboratory techniques.
  • Conducted research at CSR Pty Limited (1979-81) and the NSW EPA (1989-90) and employed as a chemical plant supervisor at AC Hatrick Chemicals (1974-78).
  • Appeared as an expert witness giving evidence in areas of fire scene investigations and debris analysis before coronial, civil and criminal courts in NSW and Queensland.
  • Other activities have included part time chemistry lecturer at UTS (1991-95) and appointed as an honorary consultant to Insearch Pty Limited (UTS) and an honorary associate of UTS (1993-97).
Tony Cafe
Tony Cafe 2004

Articles & Other Publications

Firepoint magazine articles

* The Science & "Art" of Fire Investigation - September 1998  
* Electrical Appliance Fires
* Surfing the Internet for Fire Investigators
* "Physical Constants for Fire Investigators" - February 1992
* "Aids Used to Detect Accelerants at Fire Scenes"† § - December 1993
* "Photographing the Fire Scene" March 1994
* "Is it an Accidental Fire or Arson?" Chemistry in Australia magazine - April 1989
Other Publications
Analysis Of Accelerants In Fire Debris By Capillary Gas Liquid Chromatography
Masters Thesis reproduced with permission from UTS Sydney
* "Accident or Arson?" - Statis Publications (UK) 1990
* "The Sampling of Fire Debris" 2nd Australian Arson Fraud Seminar - October 1990
* Quantum ABC television program - feature on fire investigation techniques 1988

Reprinted in News of Californian Association of Criminalistics Fall 1996

§ Reprinted in Michigan IAAI Arson News July 1996


Our chief activity, to which this site is dedicated, is the determination of fire causes and the laboratory analysis of fire debris samples for liquid petroleum accelerants, and we have built up a wide range of resources to draw from during investigations. Over the years though, TC Forensic has been involved with the training and use of sniffer dogs on fire scenes, as well as Air Quality Monitoring projects.

Sniffer Dogs

One of the major aims in any fire scene investigation is the successful location and identification of flammable liquid accelerants, and the use of accelerant sniffer dogs has been hailed as one of the most significant advances in recent years. After being the first group in Australia to train such a dog, TC Forensic has used the dog at fire scenes with outstanding success.

Air Quality Monitoring

T.C. Forensic's Air Quality Monitoring division was established between 1993 and 1996, completing studies for the N.S.W. Road Traffic Authority on sites including:

* M5 Motorway, Sydney
* Badgerys Creek proposed airport site
* Eastern Distributor, Sydney
* Southern Cross Drive, Sydney
* Ballina Bypass, Northern NSW
On site
On site at Bourke St, Darlinghurst 1995 -
site of Sydney's Eastern Distributor