Warrant put out for bomb hoaxer

Crime story
Crime story

A HOAXER who triggered a terror alert in Wigan town centre has failed to turn up to court to receive his sentence.

William Nicolson last month pleaded guilty to calling in the bomb hoax which had police officers searching through bins in September.

The 44-year-old was due to appear at Liverpool Crown Court on Friday for sentencing but an arrest warrant was issued due to his no-show, court officials told the Evening Post.

When he made the call, Nicolson, of Upper St Stephen Street, Whelley, was wearing a “distinctive yellow T-shirt” emblazoned with the logo “If your God approves of suicide bombers, then my God thinks your God is a ****.”

He had spent “most of the day drinking” Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court was told at an earlier hearing.

Karen Schofield, defending, said her client had no recollection of what he had said during the call although he had accepted it was him when the audio was played back to him during police interview.

She said: “He hung his head during his interview, he is remorseful and regrets what he did. But he would still not be able to tell you what he said.

“Obviously it is a concern that the offence is committed while intoxicated.

“It is unfair to suggest that his shirt had any bearing on what happened in making the call.”

Nicolson will be required to attend court at a later date to receive his sentence.

At the committal hearing, Carl Gaffney, prosecuting, told the court he did not need to outline the implications of the “distress and panic” the hoax call could have caused to the general public and the emergency services if it had not been resolved as swiftly as it was.

He said: “That he had been drinking is not a mitigating factor, it is a contributory factor.”