Wrexham bomb hoaxer gets wish to go back to jail


Staff reporter

A BOMB hoaxer who made 11 calls to businesses and organisations throughout Britain and also started three fires so he could go back to prison got his wish yesterday.

Paul William Jones, 33, was given an indeterminate sentence for public protection and will only be let out when it is considered safe to do so.

But Judge Niclas Parry made it clear at Caernarfon Crown Court that the sentence “is not because of what you want, but because it’s necessary to protect the public”.

Jones, got sentences of public protection for the arson attacks and also seven years – six for the hoax calls and a year for attempting to pervert justice by writing a “sinister letter” from a remand centre to an arson victim who owned a fitness centre, and for having a 10-inch long knife when arrested by police in Wrexham town centre.

The judge told him: “The public have every reason to be extremely worried about you.”

Jones, of Maple Avenue, Oswestry, had previous sentences of five years in 2003 for attempted robbery, and three years in 2006 and five years in 2009 for bomb hoaxes.

The judge said his offences were premeditated and planned and he was not suffering from a mental disorder.

Prosecuting, Paulinus Barnes said Jones, who pleaded guilty, had started a fire which destroyed an unoccupied £275,000 house in Middleton Road, Oswestry, which was being bequeathed to a local hospice, which was now worth just the £100,000 value of the land.

He’d also started a fire by stuffing a burning newspaper through the letter box of the Zion Fitness Centre in Coney Green, Oswestry, then at the town’s old railway station had set an 1890s signal box ablaze, which was owned by the Cambrian Railway Trust, with damage estimated at between £5,000 and £8,000.

He’d written to Alan Bray, proprietor of the Fitness Centre, from prison, and said: “I’m sorry it was not a bigger fire.”

In his series of bomb hoaxes he’d warned “tick, tick, tick” and there had to be evacuations and calls to the fire brigade.

Victims were Wrexham housing department, the VOSA offices at Wrexham, the Department of Transport, Wilkinsons’ Store, Wrexham, Poundland at the Potter’s Shopping Centre, Stoke-on-Trent, Poundland at Bedford, The Hounds Hill Shopping Centre in Blackpool, the Pentagon Shopping Centre in Chatham, the BBC offices at Portland Place in London, the probation offices at Shrewsbury and the Elstree Film Studios in Hertfordshire.

Stephen Edwards, defending, said it was his sixth conviction for bomb hoaxes in 13 years.

“He had explained that the reason and motivation was that he wanted to go back to prison, where he feels secure,” he explained. Jones felt he could not cope outside.

Jones, who was born with cerebral palsy, was a prolific letter writer and had written to the judge and court officers. Police would not have linked him to the arson attacks until he confessed.

Mr Edwards added: “He wants to go back into custody for a long period of time.”

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