A High Peak man who downloaded terrorist bomb making manuals, before going on the run to Bulgaria, has been jailed.
The man was first arrested at his home on 2 March 2020, after intelligence relating to him buying materials that may be used in making explosives was received by Derbyshire Constabulary.
At his home officers found chemicals that, when mixed in the correct amounts, could be used to create explosives.
Alongside the chemicals a notepad with detailed references to mixing these substances together to create explosives was found.
Following his arrest, his laptop was seized and forensically examined. On it officers found searches for how to make gunpowder – as well as downloaded terrorist bomb making manuals.
Following these discoveries, Derbyshire police officers handed over the case to officers from Counter Terrorism Policing East Midlands (CTPEM) to investigate further.
Further searches of devices owned by the man, found that he had downloaded extremist material from both extreme right-wing and Islamic terror organisations which show attacks, beheadings and bomb making tutorials.
In interview, he claimed that the material was used for legitimate usage – and that he had an interest in firearms and was looking to pursue a career in their manufacturing.
The 29-year-old was charged with an offence under section 4 of the Explosive Substances Act 1883 and was due to appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 22 October 2022, however, he failed to attend.
It was found that he had left the country and flown to Bulgaria – telling officers he had no plan to return to the UK.
Officers from CTPEM worked with officers from the National Crime Agency to circulate the man as wanted.
He was eventually arrested by Bulgarian authorities in January 2023 before being extradited back to the UK where he was remanded to prison prior to his trial.
Last week, following a trial, the jury at Manchester Crown Court returned a guilty verdict and yesterday (7 August) he was sentenced to 2 years and 6 months in prison.
DS Frank Fraser from Counter Terrorism Policing East Midlands said: “The substances and downloaded bomb making materials possessed are very concerning.
“Not only had he researched and written his own notes on bomb making but had also searched for and downloaded extreme footage from various terrorist groups.
“While he did not appear to have any significantly extreme political views his interest in such matters – combined with his bomb making materials and handbooks – makes for a dangerous individual.
“We welcome both the verdict and sentence and hope it sends a clear message that we will do all we can to ensure the safety of our communities.
“We have seen an increasing number of people being exposed to extremist material online and I would urge anyone who has any concerns about any of the family or friends who may be exhibiting concerning behaviour to report it.”
If you are concerned about someone you know and their activity you can report through the ACT counter terror website in confidence: Report possible terrorist or extremist activity – Action Counters Terrorism