Colchester parcel bomb was not sophisticated, says explosives expert

Police, paramedics and fire fighters at the scene in Othello Close in Greenstead, Colchester, where

Police, paramedics and fire fighters at the scene in Othello Close in Greenstead, Colchester, where a parcel bomb allegedly exploded. - Credit: Staff

A parcel bomb allegedly made and sent by a Colchester man to his father and step-mother’s home has been described as “technically not very complex” by an expert.

Giving evidence during the second week of the trial of 54-year-old Wayne Jeffries, forensic explosives expert, Verna Fontenelle said the device didn’t have a timer or a remote control fitted to it and therefore in her opinion it wasn’t as sophisticated as some she had seen.

She said the device had components of an IED (improvised explosive device) and an IID( improvised incendiary device) and had been made with items including a cardboard shoe box, batteries, matches, butane gas canisters, tape, clothes pegs, firework explosive and metal tacks.

She said that whoever made the bomb would have needed previous knowledge or would have had to look up how to do it.

Jeffries, of Glisson Square, Colchester, has denied causing an explosion likely to endanger life or cause serious injury to property on December 2016.

It has been alleged that Jeffries made and sent the parcel bomb to the home of his father and step-mother because he had a “burning sense of grievance” towards them for alleged abuse he suffered as a child.

The court has heard that Mrs Jeffries’ hair and clothing were singed by the device which was packed with hundreds of metal tacks and exploded with such force that it damaged the house and dislodged a loft hatch.

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The court heard that in 2008 Sandra and Victor Jeffries had a £40,000 lottery win and Jeffries had subsequently alleged that Sandra and Victor Jeffries had abused him when he was a child.

The police investigated the allegations and referred the matter to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) which decided no action should be taken against the couple.

“It is clear from what was later uncovered by the police that this defendant had a burning sense of grievance against his parents.

“No doubt incensed by that decision the defendant, we say, took matters in to his own hands and sent to his parents’ home address this explosive device,” said Christopher Paxton, prosecuting.

He alleged there were a number of strands of evidence that allegedly linked Jeffries to the explosive device.

The court heard that after his arrest Jeffries denied making or sending the the device.

The trial continues.

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