In Australia, Deadly Hotel Siege Ends Peacefully

GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) - A man allegedly involved in a 17-hour siege at a hotel on Australia's east coast was armed with an arsenal of bombs, grenades, flame throwers and a gun, police said Monday.

Details of the incredible weapons cache, which also included a rocket launcher and grenade launcher, came as Jonathon Richwood, 43, appeared in Southport Magistrates Court on nine charges linked to the siege, which ended peacefully on Christmas Eve.

Richwood was not required to enter pleas to nine charges including attempting to destroy property at The Grand Hotel in Labrador with explosives and attempting to injure with explosives. He also was charged with causing bodily harm, deprivation of liberty, willful damage of the hotel and possession of weapons.

The maximum sentence he faces was not immediately available.

Richwood allegedly booby-trapped his 12-floor room with enough explosives to bring down the entire hotel.

``The power could have leveled a 15-story building,'' Senior Constable Tracy Dixon told the court.

Dixon said that Richwood had become fascinated with bomb making, using instructions from the Internet and a terrorist manual to build and test explosive devices made from materials he bought from hardware and toy stores.

In an interview with police, details of which were given to the court, Richwood said he had a problem with managers of his rented apartment near the hotel where the siege happened and booked himself into the hotel to get away from people.

Police also alleged that he attempted to lure baby sitters to his hotel room to use as hostages.

Dixon urged magistrate Jennifer Batts to hold Richwood in custody, saying he was ``capable of causing mass destruction.''

Defense lawyer Michael Dwyer said Richwood believed he was under the influence of 40 pain killing tablets that he had taken at some time before the siege.

Batts said Richwood was a danger to himself and others and ordered him held in custody until his next scheduled court appearance on Jan. 19.

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