Families evacuated from homes after metal detectorist tries to sell live WWII bomb on eBay

The bomb was destroyed in a controlled explosion by a disposal squad

Joanna Taylor
Friday 21 May 2021 16:32
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Police evacuated residents from their homes in Hampshire to remove a live World War II bomb from a house after it was listed on eBay.

A metal detectorist from Southampton was arrested after advertising the 80-year-old device online where it was spotted and reported to police.

The force, alongside the fire service and Army Explosive Ordnance Disposal team, evacuated homes in Swaythling, near Southampton, on Tuesday afternoon and cordoned off the area before seizing the 1kg munition.

It was then taken to a police training centre in Netley where it was destroyed in a controlled explosion, a spokesperson for Hampshire Police said.

The spokesperson added that a 51-year-old had been arrested on suspicion of possessing an explosive substance for an unlawful purpose, but was released without further action.

The bomb was reportedly listed on eBay as a “WWII Germany incendiary bomb – genuine, authentic Southampton Blitz” — although police have not confirmed if this was correct.

An eBay spokesperson told the Daily Mail: “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.”

Mass airstrikes were carried out on the UK by German bombers between 1940 and 1941. An estimated 12,000 metric tons of bombs were dropped during this period, mainly on London.

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