University student who built device with a clock from Tesco faces years in prison
A student who was obsessed with weapons could spend years in prison after he was convicted of planting a home-made bomb on a Jubilee line train.
Damon Joseph Smith, 20, built the device at home with a £2 clock from Tesco after searching the interview for an al Qaida article entitled “Make A Bomb In The Kitchen Of Your Mom”.
Smith, a former altar boy, was found guilty of possession of an explosive substance with intent after two hours on deliberation on Wednesday afternoon.
He had already admitted the lesser offence of making a bomb hoax.
A Jubilee train had to be evacuated at North Greenwich after Smith abandoned a bag containing the device in the front carriage on the morning of 20 October last year.
He was caught on CCTV as he travelled on the train, casually flicking through a text book before getting off and leaving the bomb on the floor, timed to go off within minutes.
At least 10 passengers were in the carriage at the time and some of them spotted the abandoned rucksack and alerted the driver.
But jurors were told the driver at first dismissed it as lost property and took it into his cab and carried on towards North Greenwich.
During the journey, he spotted wires coming out and he raised the alarm as he pulled into the station.
Had the bomb worked, it would have exploded just as commuters were being ordered off the platform, the jury heard.
Smith went on to college and, on returning home in the evening, checked the internet for news of what he had done.
When police searched Smith’s home in Rotherhithe, south London, they uncovered a fixation with guns, explosives and other weapons.
Police seized a blank-firing self-loading pistol and a BB gun, both bought legally, as well as a knuckleduster and a knife which he showed off in an online video.
Smith watched YouTube videos on explosions and posted a picture of himself on Facebook in a Guy Fawkes mask holding handcuffs and a knuckleduster.
Police also uncovered torn-off scraps of shredded paper with bomb-making instructions on it and a “shopping list” of components.