Belfast Telegraph

Jail for man who kept deadly pipe bomb in house for three weeks

By George Jackson

A man who admitted storing an unexploded pipe bomb in his flat for over three weeks has been jailed for six months.

David Albert Baranowski (25) pleaded guilty to a charge of possessing the device between February 26 and March 22 last year.

It was found under a blanket in the utility room of Baranowski's first-floor flat at Sperrin Park in the Waterside area of Londonderry.

The flat was searched by police on March 21 last year.

Forensic scientists described the device as a viable improvised explosive device.

Baranowski told police the device had been placed in his flat by another man, a Catholic, whose house in a loyalist estate had been the target of a pipe bomb attack.

Baranowski, now of Killymallaght Road at Cullion in the Waterside, refused to identify the other man to police.

He said he had given the man the keys to his flat and asked him to look after his dog when he was at a boxing bout in Manchester.

When he returned his friend told him he had left the pipe bomb in his flat.

A prosecution barrister accepted there was no suggestion that Baranowski had constructed the pipe bomb. He said Baranowski and his friend had considered taking the device to the River Foyle and throwing it into the river, but they were afraid of being caught by police.

After his arrest, Baranowski told police he had considered putting the pipe bomb in a bath in his flat. He said that he was in an awkward position and didn't know what to do.

The prosecutor said it was accepted that Baranowski did not harbour any malicious intentions for the use of the pipe bomb.

Defence barrister Nicola Rountree said Baranowski found himself in a stressful and awkward situation and he was fearful of the repercussions.

She said he was relieved when the police found the pipe bomb and said it was a case of indecision on Baranowski's part.

Judge Philip Babington said that Baranowski had 61 previous convictions and was likely to be a re-offender.

He ruled Baranowski would serve six months in custody followed by six months on licence after his prison release.

The judge also made a destruction order in respect of the pipe bomb.

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