The jury has retired to consider its verdict in the trial of a man accused of a bomb hoax when he placed an e-cigarette battery at the gates of a Territorial Army base.

Jake Freeman accepts that he was the person captured on CCTV placing metallic cylinder on the gate truss but maintains he was only trying to tidy the area up.

The 24-year-old said he never intended to cause any alarm or to create a bomb hoax when he left it outside the site on Neasham Road, Darlington.

The Northern Echo: Emergency services on Neasham Road, Darlington, after the battery was found outside the TA centreEmergency services on Neasham Road, Darlington, after the battery was found outside the TA centre (Image: Picture: THE NORTHERN ECHO)

The defendant said he couldn’t find a bin to dispose of the battery and thought it wouldn’t cause any problem if he left it at the security gates of the TA centre.

Jurors listened to a transcript of the defendant’s police interview where he became involved in a verbal altercation with one of the officers following his arrest.

Dr Christopher Wood, representing Freeman, told jurors in his closing argument that what his client had done was ‘stupid’ but urged them not to convict him of causing the bomb hoax.

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The Northern Echo:

Joe Culley, prosecuting, said the defendant had chosen the TA site to place the battery pack and urged the jury to remember what he said following his arrest.

While he was in the police station, Freeman said: "I put a bomb at the army. Bang. Remember, remember the fifth of November when Guy Fawkes blew up Parliament."

Freeman, of Walworth Crescent, Darlington, denies placing an article with intent to cause a bomb hoax.

The trial continues.