Teenage blackmailer in £1m G4S bomb plot gets 2 years
A TEENAGER who sent an anonymous blackmail letter threatening to blow up security vans belonging to his employer unless he was paid £1million was yesterday locked up for two years.
Work at the G4S cashhandling depot in Thornaby, Teesside, was forced to a halt when Daniel Garland posted the chilling note saying he had planted remote-controlled “mini-bombs” on vehicles.
Branch manager Dean Jeffels was terrified when he opened a letter warning robbers would storm the depot with weapons if the huge sum of not loaded on to a next day.
More than 100 police officers joined a major inquiry across four force areas and vans carrying cash were recalled to depots to be searched.
The security giant’s were put at £15,000.
The police operation in January sparked by the then 19-yearold’s actions was estimated to have cost a further £35,000.
Garland, now 20, of Chesterle-Street, County Durham, was cash was truck the losses sentenced to two years in a young offenders’ institution after admitting a bomb hoax charge. He had denied blackmail but was convicted after a trial at Durham Crown Court.
He read out a letter of apology via a videolink from custody.
He said: “I would like to express my heartfelt apologies to the Crown, members of G4S, the police and any individuals that might have been affected by my mindless and thoughtless actions.”
Recorder Euan Duff said: “We live in an age when bombs which can kill or maim are sadly a feature of modern life in the UK. No bomb threat can be taken lightly.”
The judge accepted that he never truly intended to make £1million from the letter, but said his intention was to get two colleagues into trouble.
The letter, which Garland took pains not to touch without gloves, said the two were involved in an earlier unsolved robbery.
Garland had claimed he was bullied by the pair at work and hoped they might lose their jobs as a result of his plot. But the judge dismissed the allegation.
Daniel Garland at an earlier hearing and a G4S security van