A British teenage neo-Nazi who listed venues in his home city as potential terrorist targets has been jailed for six years and eight months, according to media reports on Tuesday.
The boy, who was 16 at the time of the offence and cannot be named, had drawn up his own manifesto naming schools, pubs and council buildings in Durham in North East England as potential sites to bomb.
The now 17-year-old wrote about an ‘inevitable race war’ in his diary and his attack preparations included researching explosives and trying to obtain the dangerous chemical ammonium nitrate.
He also wrote of planning to conduct an arson spree targeting synagogues in the Durham area using Molotov cocktails, the BBC reported.
A jury had found him guilty of preparation of terrorist acts between October 2017 and March 2018.
He was sentenced to six years and eight months at Manchester Crown Court, the report said.
The boy was convicted of six terror offences, including preparing acts of terrorism, disseminating terrorist publications and possessing material for terrorist purposes, The Independent newspaper reported.
Judge David Stockdale told the boy: ‘These are offences of the utmost seriousness.’ The judge described him as a widely-read ‘young man of high intellect’, adding this made it a matter of ‘infinite regret’ that he had persisted on ‘such a twisted and – many would say sick – ideological path’.
He said the evidence in the trial ‘tells its own macabre story’, and while his young age was a powerful mitigating factor, it was also a ‘most disturbing’ aspect of the case.
‘You suffer from an autistic spectrum disorder’, he told him, saying it was common ground between experts.
The judge also said the teenager had written him a letter expressing ‘remorse’.
During the trial, the court was told that the teen visited websites on firearms and was in communication with a gun auctioneer.
After his arrest in March 2019, police found him in possession of instructions showing to make bombs and ricin – and that he had distributed firearms manuals online by uploading them to a neo-Nazi website.
In one of the journal entries, the youth wrote of his admiration for Adolf Hitler – ‘a brave man to say the least’.
However, he said that he had no intention of carrying out any attacks and claimed he adopted a fake right-wing persona for ‘shock value’, The Telegraph reported.
Commenting on the verdicts, Detective Chief Superintendent Martin Snowden, head of Counter Terrorism Policing North East, said: ‘The extreme right-wing views and hateful rhetoric displayed by this teenager are deeply concerning and we cannot account for those who may have been susceptible to his influence or how they may act in the future.’