Parcel bomb disguised as whisky killed man

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The Independent Online

A father staggered blinded and mortally injured around his flat as his three-year-old son looked on in horror after he opened a parcel bomb disguised as a presentation bottle of Southern Comfort, an inquest heard yesterday.

A father staggered blinded and mortally injured around his flat as his three-year-old son looked on in horror after he opened a parcel bomb disguised as a presentation bottle of Southern Comfort, an inquest heard yesterday.

Stephen Hoggarth, 32, suffered massive chest injuries from the device.

The inquest, at Louth, Lincolnshire, where Mr Hoggarth lived, heard how explosive powder had been packed into the small bottle before being mailed to the victim.

Mr Hoggarth, a floor fitter, was alone in his two-bedroom flat with his son Callum when the bomb went off on 11 December last year. Callum spent almost two hours with the mutilated body.

Recording a verdict of unlawful killing, the coroner, Neil Sharpley, said: "This device was fiendish and was put together by someone who knew what they were doing."

Less than a week after the explosion, the bodies of former workmate David Broddle and his girlfriend Lorraine Richardson were found in a fume-filled car in the Derbyshire Dales.

Suicide notes left by the couple suggested Mr Broddle had built and sent the bomb in revenge for being assaulted by Mr Hoggarth at a Christmas party a year earlier.

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