University student caught with 70,000 white supremacist and neo-Nazi documents and bomb making manual he downloaded onto hard drives avoids jail
A university student was caught with nearly 70,000 white supremacist and neo-Nazi documents and diagrams on how to construct explosive devices, a court heard.
Ben John, 21, had become part of the Extreme Right Wing (XRW) who believe ‘terrorist acts are justified as a means to starting the race wars’, a court heard.
The XRW is the term for activists who commit criminal activity motivated by racism, extreme nationalism, fascism and Neo Nazism, police have said.
Leicester Crown Court heard how the criminality and psychology student was caught with thousands of ‘extremely dangerous’ neo-Nazi material.
University student Ben John, 21, (pictured) was caught with nearly 70,000 white supremacist and neo-Nazi documents and diagrams on how to construct explosive devices, Leicester Crown Court heard
Forensic computer investigators found a radical publication from the 70s, The Anarchist Cookbook, which included diagrams and instructions on how to build explosives in his hard drive.
In the UK, it is illegal to knowingly possess material that could assist in terrorist-related activities under Section 58 of the Terrorism Act.
John had also amassed 67,788 documents in bulk downloads, which contained a wealth of white supremist and anti-Semitic material.
They also found material related to a Satanist organisation.
A Leicester Crown Court jury voted unanimously to find John guilty of having in his possession a record of information likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism (stock image)
One of the hard drives was found hidden inside a sock when officers searched his home.
The jury voted unanimously to find John guilty of having in his possession a record of information likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism.
John, of Lincoln, Lincolnshire, was convicted of terrorism and handed a two-year sentence suspended for two years today.
Detective Inspector James Manning said: ‘This was a young man who could be anyone’s son, studying at university, and living one life in public, while conducting another in private.
Forensic computer investigators found a radical publication from the 70s, The Anarchist Cookbook (pictured), which included diagrams and instructions on how to build explosives in his hard drive
‘He possessed a wealth of National Socialist and anti-Semitic material which indicated a fascination and belief in a White Supremacist ideology along with support for an extreme satanic group which is increasingly of concern for law enforcement agencies.
‘The terrorist material he was found in possession of is extremely dangerous, and he acquired this to further his ideology.
‘It indicates the threat that he and other followers of this hateful ideology pose to National Security. It was not light reading, or material most would concern themselves with for legitimate reasons.
‘This has been a long and complex investigation over the course of 11 months.’
The judge said this was John’s ‘last chance’, and commended the investigating team on their work.