A 17-year-old boy has been sentenced to prison for throwing several firebombs onto the busy M3 motorway in England last year, The Guardian reported on Friday.
Sentencing the defendant, Nicholas Elger, Judge Keith Cutler described him as a “dangerous offender,” and highlighted he had used his excellent chemistry skills to build improvised weapons to cause harm and chaos.
“I consider you are a dangerous offender. There is a significant risk to members of the public of serious harm from you in the future. He’s [the defendant] very intelligent, possibly the most able chemist the college has produced in recent years,” the judge said while sentencing the schoolboy to 4-and-a-half years in prison.
Elger was sentenced at Winchester Crown Court for his senseless attack, which took place last September, and didn’t result in any injuries, to the defendant’s annoyance.
“I do not regret the incident, I regret not doing them differently and not succeeding in killing,” the perpetrator said.
According to estimates, his firebomb attack resulted in £40 million (over $52 million at the current GBP/USD exchange rate) worth of damage to the local economy, as a segment of the motorway was closed for 11 hours, causing significant disruption.
Judge Cutler said this wasn’t his first crime, as he had also burgled his boarding school and blackmailed the headteacher. In addition to arson, the defendant was also charged with eight counts of burglary and two charges of theft.
Although arson remains a serious issue in major cities across the UK, unprecedented levels of knife crime is most alarming, especially in the capital, where a police chief warned earlier this year that authorities had lost control of London’s streets.