A 61-year-old living in Dublin, originally from Scotland, has been found guilty by the Dublin Central Criminal Court of sending two hoax bomb emails to Heathrow Airport and for causing annoyance, inconvenience and needless anxiety.
The man, who is believed to be a member of the Scottish dissident movement, sent the messages from a public library.
Judge Desmond Hogan remanded the man in custody until his sentencing date on July 23.
The jury of seven men and five women returned their verdict after four and a half hours’ of deliberation.
A former Media Relations Assistant at the British Airports Authority told the Court how the e-mails had been sent from an address called “People’s Will”, with a subject line that read “bomb on aircraft”. The text of the e-mail read: “There is an explosive device on flight BA117 en route from London Heathrow to New York.”
The airport’s security manager told the court how a risk assessment was carried out every time an e-mail such as this was received, but that the airport’s security team had at the time considered the e-mail relatively low-risk.
Mr Orwin said a second email with the subject line “urgent bomb” was received by the Heathrow Media Centre on May 15th, 2006 at 10.43 am. It came from the email address “snla_cell_at_yahoo.ca” and read: “There is a bomb on flight VS003 to New York which will explode before arrival.”
Again the email was deemed to be a relatively low threat.
When Irish police compared CCTV footage at the library from which the e-mail were sent with data stored on the seized computers they easily identified the sender.