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A former mayor of Denbigh has been jailed for 18 years after being found guilty of causing a series of explosions in the town earlier this year. The judge described 46-year-old John Larsen as carrying out "sustained campaign of quite deliberate terror". Lorna Prichard reports.
North Wales Police have welcomed the sentencing of former Denbigh mayor John Larsen saying the case showed how he 'betrayed the trust' of those in the community.
North Wales Police have released images showing some of the explosive devices and materials used by former mayor John Larsen.
Sentencing John Larsen to 18 years in prison, Judge Merfyn Hughes said the former mayor had subjected the residents of Denbigh to "a sustained campaign of quite deliberate terror".
He said Larsen's victims were residents of the community he had been elected to serve. Hew said: "Even while detonating these devices, you continued the pretence of showing concern for their welfare and co-operating with the police."
He said Larsen's actions had caused two residents to sell their homes and move away out of fear. He said he was sure someone would have been killed or seriously injured if Larsen hadn't been stopped.
The Crown Prosecution Service says the former mayor of Denbigh, John Larsen, caused "significant alarm and distress" to many residents, through "incredibly reckless behaviour."
The judge, Merfyn Hughes QC, said that although John Larsen's actions in causing a series of explosions in Denbigh did not constitute terrorism in the usual sense, it was "a sustained campaign of quite deliberate terror."
Sentencing John Larsen at Caernarfon Crown Court, the judge said: "If you hadn't been arrested, I'm entirely satisfied you would have killed someone or caused serious injury."
Merfyn Hughes QC said the former mayor of Denbigh had abused the trust of local people, and cared nothing for vulnerable residents living nearby.
The former mayor of Denbigh, John Larsen, has been sentenced to 18 years in prison, after being found guilty of causing a series of explosions in the town earlier this year.
Colin L Hughes, who served alongside John Larsen on Denbigh Town Council, said he was one of the last people you would suspect of causing the explosions.
He told our reporter Lorna Prichard "it's difficult for me to say anything negative" about the former mayor - it was "a shock, to a lot of people" to learn that he was responsible.
The former mayor of Denbigh, John Larsen, had been reporting the explosions, which he caused himself, to the police.
He claimed he found a device planted in an advertising board, and told the shop owners.
Helen Richards, a worker at the shop in Denbigh, said it was "strange", as they had not even noticed, so they told the police to check on Larsen.