Three federal agents shot in Kansas gunbattle with suspect

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[April 25, 2016]    (Reuters) - Three federal law enforcement officers were wounded in an exchange of gunfire in Topeka, Kansas, as they tried to arrest an armed robbery suspect at a motel that became engulfed in fire during the confrontation, authorities said on Sunday.

A joint fugitive task force that included the U.S. Marshals Service, the FBI and local law enforcement attempted to arrest Orlando Collins at the Country Club Motel in Topeka about 10 p.m. on Saturday, said Amy McCarter, a spokeswoman for the Topeka Police Department.

Collins, 28, was on the state's most wanted list for allegedly committing a series of armed robberies. The FBI said he was considered armed and dangerous.

As investigators approached the room where they believed Collins was staying, they came under fire, the FBI said.

Two deputy U.S. marshals and an FBI agent suffered non-life-threatening injuries in the gunbattle. At some point, a fire was started inside the hotel room, eventually spreading to the entire building.

Investigators discovered a body inside the room after the fire was extinguished but have not yet identified it. No other motel guests were injured.

One of the marshals has already been released from the hospital, while the other was stable, said a spokeswoman for the marshals service.

(Reporting by Joseph Ax in New York; Editing by Ros Russell and Peter Cooney)

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