Page last updated at 16:32 GMT, Friday, 13 June 2008 17:32 UK

Terror campaign postman is jailed

Jefferson Azevedo
Azevedo planted a hoax bomb over the A27 in Havant in 2007

A postman who left a hoax bomb on a bridge and sent white powder in the post to leading figures, including Tony Blair, has been jailed for four years.

Jefferson Azevedo, 45, sent letters with white powder or Nazi slogans to various people between 2003 and 2007.

Azevedo, of Langley Road, Portsmouth, admitted 19 offences - nine of them under the Terrorism Act. He agreed for another 140 to be considered.

Brazilian-born Azevedo was sentenced at Southwark Crown Court.

Altogether he targeted more than 150 organisations and individuals, including schools, MPs, charities, media organisations, mosques and churches.

I can't ignore the fact these offences seem to have be racially-aggravated
Judge Peter Testar

He also placed a hoax bomb and a swastika flag on a footbridge over the A27 near Havant, Hampshire, in February 2007, forcing the closure of the road and causing five-mile tailbacks.

Sentencing Azevedo, Judge Peter Testar said: "I find a significant aggravating factor in this case was the sheer nastiness which was directed against individuals.

"I can't ignore the fact these offences seem to have be racially-aggravated."

He added Azevedo's campaign seemed to have been triggered by anger he felt when his English girlfriend apparently suffered a lack of support when their child was born.

Judge Testar said in Azevedo's view the help she should have received had been "allocated disproportionately to others in the community".

'Acted alone'

Southwark Crown Court heard letters - postmarked "Portsmouth and IoW" - were sent to the Royal Naval Dockyard in Portsmouth, and another was posted to the Attorney General's office in London, as well as to former Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Two letters containing white powder were sent to St Albans Primary School in Havant.

The head office of mobile phone company, O2, in Slough, Berkshire, was also sent hate mail.

They were all signed "RAHOWA" - a racist acronym also known as Racial Holy War, used in the past by white supremacists.

The hoax bomb Azevedo planted on a footbridge over the A27 in Havant
In 2007 Azevedo planted a hoax bomb over the A27 in Havant

Home Office minister Beverley Hughes was described in the letters as a "race traitor".

They also criticised the former prime minister for considering proposals to turn the former naval air station HMS Daedalus in Lee-on-the-Solent into an asylum centre.

The 2004 plans were later dropped.

A number of media organisations in Hampshire were also targeted and 22 letters were sent to churches, mosques and restaurants.

Azevedo was finally caught when he was arrested for assaulting his girlfriend in December 2007.

A DNA sample was taken, which matched DNA taken from the hate mail.

Police said he had acted alone.

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