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Migrant centre firebomber Andy Leak, 66, shared far-Right content online ‘and lost penis to cancer’
2 November 2022, 10:05
The man who attacked a Dover migrant centre before killing himself had shared far-right content and posted racist comments online, it has emerged.
Andy Leak, 66, who suffered from mental health issues following the death of his son, smoked cannabis and posted pictures of Batman villain The Joker.
He is understood to have had health issues including arthritis and had battled cancer in recent years. The Daily Mail reported he told a neighbour he had to have his penis removed because of a late stage tumour around four years ago.
Last October, he wrote that he had sent a parcel ‘to the British government’ warning that he wanted to ‘end illegal immigration into this country within one year from the French boat side.’
He posted pictures online of him wearing a Union Jack face mask, and frequently shared conspiracy theories from far-right groups.
In July, he posted: “All Muslims are guilty of grooming … they only rape non-Muslims”. Last year he wrote: “A message to the UK government: if you dare come for our children we will come for you. If I can not have freedom, then I will choose death.”
In August, Leak wrote: “Next time the job centre sanctions your money for not looking for enough work asked them about the thousands of people getting benefits cannot speak English can not write English [sic]”.
He also shared a transphobic article from conservative news site The Blaze and would reference far-Right activist Tommy Robinson, a study of his profile by campaign group Hope Not Hate found.
He drove 120 miles from his home in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, to throw three petrol bombs at a security checkpoint from his rented car. Then he drove to a nearby petrol station and killed himself. Two members of staff at the centre suffered minor injuries.
Counter-terror police announced yesterday they had taken over the investigation with detectives saying they believe the suspect was sparked by "some form of hate filled grievance".
Detective Chief Superintendent Olly Wright, head of Counter Terrorism Policing South East (CTPSE), said: "This was a traumatic incident for everyone involved, and the wider community, and we're working hard to establish exactly what led to the events on Sunday morning.
"We understand that when Counter Terrorism Policing become involved, it can be worrying for some people, but I would like to reassure people that there is nothing to suggest any ongoing wider threat at this time.
"What appears clear is that this despicable offence was targeted and likely to be driven by some form of hate filled grievance, though this may not necessarily meet the threshold of terrorism.
"At this point, the incident itself has not been declared a terrorist incident, but this is being kept under review as the investigation progresses."
Police believe he was working alone and are trying to establish the exact circumstances and motivation for the incident.
Officers say there is not believed to be any wider threat to either the High Wycombe or Dover areas.
A search warrant was carried out at a property in High Wycombe on Monday and a number of items of interest were recovered, including digital media devices, which officers say are being examined as quickly as possible.
Due to the nature of the evidence gathered so far, Kent Police says it is "clear" officers with specialist experience are best placed to lead the probe and have handed the investigation over to CTPSE.
Officers were called at 11.22am on Sunday morning to The Viaduct road by the Western Jet Foil site.
The Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit attended and made sure there were no further threats.
Following the incident, 700 people were moved to Manston asylum processing centre in Kent for safety reasons.