Homemade bomb maker from Rainham tried to kill himself after child porn arrest
- Credit: Archant
A man who tested a homemade bomb in his kitchen causing the evacuation of hundreds of people, wanted to kill himself after being arrested over child pornography, a court heard on Tuesday.
Ian Shingler, 41, of Plough Court, Broadis Way, Rainham, was sentenced to nine years in prison after pleading guilty to four offences – the possession of ammunition and a firearm without a certificate, having an explosive substance under suspicious circumstances and possessing indecent images of children.
The explosives were found after Shingler called police, prompting 300 residents to be evacuated from Orchard Village estate for eight hours in July last year.
Shingler told officers he had explosives in his flat and was going to kill himself.
When police arrived at the scene they found the door of the oven had been decimated and the remains of a homemade explosive device on a baking tray.
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A kilogram of TATP, also known as acetone peroxide a highly unstable and explosive white powder used in the 7/7 London bombings, was found in the bedroom.
Tests revealed it was 82 per cent pure and had been ordered from the internet.
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Officers also found an improvised explosive device, made using a nine volt battery, designed by Shingler to kill himself as well as a notepad of instructions to make homemade bombs and a suicide note.
Shingler had previously been arrested for possession of indecent images and Basildon Crown Court heard his fear of a custodial sentence was behind his suicidal intentions.
Before contacting police he had tried to shoot himself with an improvised multi-barrel shotgun made of pipes, but the cartridges he had did not fit the makeshift weapon.
Michael Morris, defending Shingler, told the court he was of “good character” and his only friend had been the internet.
Mr Morris told the judge Shingler called the police after realising the imminent danger.
“He was concerned about his neighbours and he immediately called the police because his intention was to take his own life and he did not want to cause damage or injure his neighbours.
“He didn’t really have a clue about what he was doing,” he said.
But Judge Jonathan Black stressed the “seriousness” of Shingler’s activities outweighed his state of mind at the time.
“It was possible that such an explosion would have endangered the lives of his neighbours and caused serious damage to property.
“It seems to me that it is the seriousness of the offence that must take precedence in this case,” he said.
This is “a very unusual case,” the court heard and Mr Morris warned more of these cases would surface as people live in “the dream world of the internet”.
“This is a person, who needed help and needed assistance. He has the opportunity to get his life back on track,” Mr Morris added.