A man who spewed hate against Muslims and migrants online before building explosives at his home was not charged with terror offences because officials decided there was “insufficient evidence” of his motivation.
Matthew Glynn, 37, built devices including a makeshift grenade and cylinder bomb in Bristol.
He has pleaded guilty to five counts of making an explosive substance and is due to be sentenced at Bristol Crown Court next month.
The prosecution did not allege that Glynn was planning to use the homemade bombs in an attack, but his Facebook posts indicate anti-Muslim and extreme right-wing views.
The last public post, from February 2017, was a cartoon of a baby holding a sword, with the caption “English born, English bred, 100% English and proud”.
Glynn shared numerous videos from the anti-Islam Britain First extremist group, which has since been banned from Facebook and had its leaders jailed for religiously aggravated harassment.
He also shared anti-immigration memes and videos from Russia Today on the refugee crisis, as well as a post by Knights Templar International.
The group describes itself as a “militant, defensive Christian Chivalric Order” fighting the “threats we face today globally from radical Islam, liberalism, political corruption, cultural Marxism and anti-Christian bigotry”.
Glynn’s online “likes” included numerous pages devoted to weapons and military memorabilia, including an axe manufacturer.
He also followed Facebook pages called “World Against Islamism”, “Stop Islamification Wake Up World” and “Exposing Islam”, while sharing memes supporting bans on full-face veils and preventing schoolchildren from visiting mosques.
Glynn was arrested after the bombs were found at his home in Filton Avenue, Bristol, in July.
Residents in surrounding homes were evacuated for four days as military explosive ordnance units disposed of the devices.
They included a tennis ball filled with low explosives, which police said could be thrown like a grenade, a hand-held device covered in ball bearings and a cylindrical bomb.
A spokesperson for the Crown Prosecution Service said: “Glynn was charged with making an explosive device, possession of a regulated substance and possession of a prohibited weapon. There was insufficient evidence to charge any terrorism offences.”