Wales

Port Talbot man 'obsessed' with explosives jailed

Alexander Giles Image copyright South Wales Police
Image caption Alexander Giles was described by the judge as more of a "nerd" than a threat to the public

A man who admitted possessing a range of explosive chemicals and weapons has been jailed for six years.

Alexander Giles, 33, also manufactured a number of drugs at his Port Talbot home for his own personal use, including crystal methamphetamine.

Swansea Crown Court heard police had found dozens of explosive substances and bomb-making "instructions" when they raided his home in October 2017.

Judge Paul Thomas described Giles as more of a "nerd" than a "threat".

Giles admitted 23 counts of possessing an explosive substance, along with charges of possessing prohibited weapons and Class A drugs.

Image copyright South Wales Police
Image caption Police found a number of explosive materials and bomb-making instructions when they raided his home

Giles kept one of his bedrooms as a makeshift laboratory at his "very cluttered" house in Aberavon, the court heard.

Among a number of weapons, police found a stun gun "disguised as a torch" and "pepper spray" Giles had ordered from the "dark web".

The court heard security services had been alerted to him back in 2013 after an online pharmacist blocked his bulk order when they recognised some of the ingredients to make crystal meth.

Police also found a copy of the Anarchist Cookbook, which contains instructions to make bombs.

Prosecutor Catherine Richards said some of the weapons had been purchased after Giles become paranoid about his neighbours following an argument.

Image copyright South Wales Police
Image caption The security services had been alerted when Giles tried to buy materials to make crystal meth online

The court heard there was no evidence to suggest Giles had planned to use the weapons or sell the drugs he made, but was aware it was illegal.

Defending Giles, Kevin Seal said the defendant had been addicted to drugs for 10 years and was looking for "stronger and stronger" substances at the time.

Judge Thomas said that while he accepted Giles had been "obsessed" with explosives, "perhaps counter-intuitively" he did not find him to be dangerous.

"You are obsessed rather than maliciously motivated," he added.

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