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British teenager jailed for 3 years over school, airport bomb hoaxes

08 Dec 2018, 02:47 ( 5 Months ago)

DF-Xinhua Report
File Photo Xinhua.

A British teenager was jailed on Friday after making bogus bomb threats to hundreds of schools and sparking an airport security scare in Britain and the United States.

   George Duke-Cohan, 19, was jailed for three years at Luton Crown Court this afternoon.

   Duke-Cohan of Mutchetts Close, Watford, twice targeted schools in the UK and U.S. with hoax messages, before phoning in a fake report of a hijacked aircraft while under investigation.

   He pleaded guilty in September to three counts of making hoax bomb threats, during a hearing at Luton Magistrates' Court, the National Crime Agency (NCA) said.

   NCA senior investigating officer Marc Horsfall said Duke-Cohan's actions caused "serious worry and inconvenience to thousands of people" and he had carried them out "hidden behind a computer screen for his own enjoyment."

   Duke-Cohan had first created panic in March 2018 when he emailed thousands of schools in the UK warning about an explosive. More than 400 schools were evacuated as a result, according to the NCA.

   Police arrested him days later, but he was able to send another batch of emails to schools in the U.S. and UK while under investigation in April. His messages claimed a pipe bomb had been planted on the premises.

   Duke-Cohan was arrested for a second time and released on pre-charge bail with conditions that he did not use electronic devices.

   Detectives found that Duke-Cohan had made the calls to San Francisco Airport and their police force while he was on pre-charge bail for the two previous offences.

   He was arrested for a third time at his home in Watford on Aug. 31 this year.