Friday, December 9, 2022

Man tries to sell live World War II bomb on eBay

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A man in Hampshire, UK who recently found a World War II-era bomb on a grass bank near his brother’s home, tried to sell it on eBay.

The police raided his house, arrested him and families were evacuated from the area to take the bomb away for a controlled explosion. Mark Williams, 51, listed the deadly weapon on the e-commerce website despite being warned by an expert.

Militaria collector Ralf Sherwin raised the alarm after he saw the bomb listed on eBay on Monday under the heading “WWII German incendiary bomb – genuine, authentic Southampton Blitz. Condition – Used”

Sherwin messaged William, saying, “Mate, do you realise that’s not de-activated — it’s live!”

“He messaged me back and asked me how I knew. He said he was a metal detectorist and had dug it up in a kids’ playground in Southampton,” Sherwin told said.

Sherwin explained to Williams how he knew the bomb was live, however, his warning was ignored.

“I expected him to take it down and call the police, but the idiot completely ignored me and carried on selling it. What was he going to do if someone bought it – cover it in bubble wrap and post if off in a Jiffy bag?”

When Sherwin received no reply half an hour after sending the message, he contacted the police.

The cops arrived at Williams’ place on Tuesday and put a 50-metre cordon in place and evacuated families from their homes around Havenstone Way in Swaythling. Firemen and an Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal team joined them to take the deadly bomb away for a controlled explosion.

A Hampshire Police spokesman said, “On Tuesday afternoon (18 May) we were called to Havenstone Way, Swaythling, after a piece of unexploded ordnance – reported to be a WW2 incendiary bomb – was discovered. We were made aware of the bomb after it was reported as being advertised for sale on eBay.”

The spokesperson said, “A 51-year-old man from Southampton was arrested on suspicion of possessing an explosive substance for an unlawful purpose. He has been released and no further action will be taken against him.”

An eBay spokesperson said, “Clearly, dangerous weapons such as unexploded bombs are not allowed to be listed on eBay. We worked closely with Hampshire Police to quickly identify and locate this seller, aiding the successful and safe disposal of the item.”

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