Canterbury Bomb Hoax

Two people arrested by police investigating two bomb hoaxes which paralysed parts of a city centre have been released without charge.


A 41-year-old woman and a 52-year-old man were held last Friday over the sophisticated hoaxes which forced two areas of Canterbury in Kent to be evacuated.

A suspicious package was found near a railway line and a second suspect package was discovered after a fire was started in a baby changing room in a Marks and Spencer store in the city on August 26.

The two arrests were made by Kent Police after the investigation featured on the BBC's Crimewatch programme, while new CCTV footage was also released last week.

The CCTV featured a group of three women who police think bought three pay-as-you go mobile phones which were used in the execution of the hoaxes.

The phones were bought in a shop in London's West End at around lunchtime on Sunday August 14 but were only activated for the first time the day before the hoaxes, in south east London.

Detectives said today that the three women have been traced and spoken to, they won't face further action.

However, a man also identified on CCTV and who is suspected of planting the device in M&S remains at large.

Officers are unclear about the motive behind the hoaxes but have said that those responsible were organised with serious and meticulous planning.

Detective Chief Inspector Tom Richards, of Kent Police, said: ``We have a number of new lines of inquiry which are taking this investigation forward, and my team are working hard following up all the new leads and investigative opportunities we now have.''

Anyone with information is asked to call the Kent Police incident room on 01303 289600 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.