Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Gosport man 'created and sold bogus bomb detectors'

A Gosport man manufactured bogus explosive detectors and sold them for almost £600 each, a court heard.

Anthony Williamson, 58, is accused of creating and selling the device, which cannot be named for legal reasons.

It was claimed the device could detect traces of explosive, drugs and human remains but an expert has said it was "completely ineffectual."

Mr Williamson, of Montgomery Road, denies making an article for use in the course of fraud.

His trial at the Old Bailey was told Mr Williamson invented the device and sold the products to a company in Devon.

They were dispatched to customers around the world, including Pakistan and Yemen, the court heard.

The product brochure shown to the jury described the device as "unique in its detection method."

'Highly dubious'

Prosecutor Richard Whittam QC said: "It's a hand-held, battery-powered substance-detection device. It has a plastic handle, a retractable antennae.

"It claims to be a search-detection device able to detect explosives at a range of up to 100 metres. But it doesn't work."

Mr Whittam told the jury an expert studying the device said its claims were highly dubious.

The court heard police searched Mr Williamson's home in 2010 and found equipment used to make the device in his garden shed.

Documents relating to the product were found in his office, Mr Whittam said.

Mr Williamson told police he had an honorary degree from Cardiff University "in 1992, or something like that", as a result of designing a new type of scalpel.

This turned out to be false, the court was told.

An invoice found Mr Williamson charged £582 for each device supplied to a company in Devon in 2009.

The trial continues.

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