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Councillor faces explosives charges

A town councillor has been charged in connection with a series of suspected explosive incidents which saw residents in a Welsh town evacuated from their homes, police said.

A man and woman were arrested by detectives in Denbigh, Denbighshire, as part of the probe into a series of incidents where objects were ignited in the town, North Wales Police said. The incidents led to windows being broken and cars being damaged.

North Wales Police confirmed that John Larsen, 46, from Lenten Pool, Denbigh, has been charged with causing an explosion likely to endanger life or damage property. Larsen, who sits on Denbigh Town Council and represents the central ward, is due to appear at Prestatyn Magistrates' Court later.

A police spokesman said: "The 46-year-old man arrested on Friday April 19 in connection with a series of incidents in Lenten Pool, Denbigh, has been charged with an offence of causing an explosion likely to endanger life or damage property. John Larsen, of Lenten Pool, Denbigh, has been refused bail to appear before Prestatyn Magistrates' Court on Monday April 22."

A 40-year-old woman also arrested has been released on bail pending further inquiries, police added.

Residents in Lenten Pool were asked to leave their homes on Friday night and again on Saturday as police and an Army explosives ordnance disposal (EOD) unit completed a search of a house. The residents were allowed to return home on both occasions after spending several hours in a rest centre at the town hall.

North Wales Police said the investigation related to "a series of incidents whereby objects have been ignited".

Councillor Colin Hughes, who represents the upper ward on the town council, said he was "absolutely flabbergasted", adding: "I am shocked. Myself and a number of my colleagues are really rocked to the foundations."

Mr Hughes said he would like to pay tribute to the way the situation was dealt with by the emergency services and the volunteers who came together over the weekend to help the evacuation.

A spokesman for Denbigh Town Council declined to comment.


From Belfast Telegraph