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EX-ARMY BOMB EXPERT HELD IN WIFE CAR BLAST; Pregnant Vicky in explosion horror.

Byline: SUZANNAH HILLS

A FORMER Army bomb disposal expert was being held by police yesterday after his pregnant wife's car exploded.

Nick Fabian, 32, was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder hours after his wife Vicky, 32, was left with horrific leg injuries when her car blew up.

Vicky, a nurse who had just been accepted into the Army's Royal Medical Corps, was rushed to hospital after the blast, which rocked nearby homes and left the car a mangled wreck.

Initial reports had said Mrs Fabian's two sons, aged four and 10, were in the back of the car which exploded.

But the two children were in a nearby car and escaped harm.

Neighbours in the village of Vigo, near Gravesend, Kent, yesterday told how the Fabians' house had been targeted with arson attacks.

Neighbour Emma Lucas, 17, said: "Their car and caravan were set alight before Christmas and their fence caught fire too. The kids' trampoline in the garden also caught fire.

"They always seem like the perfect young family, often going for bike rides and playing in their garden. They're a lovely family and seem really happy together."

It is not known whether the bomb was wired into the ignition or detonated by remote control.

Moments after the explosion, on Friday, neighbours rushed to help and covered Vicky's wounds with T-shirts and towels.

Ten minutes later she was flown by air ambulance to hospital. Doctors believe her unborn baby was unharmed by the explosion.

Homes in the village were later evacuated and a bomb disposal robot scoured the area for other devices.

Fabian, who met Princess Diana at his passing out parade after joining the Army when he was 18, has two children from a previous marriage.

He now works for Battersea Dogs Home after leaving the Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment in 2003.

A Kent police spokesman said: "A 32-year-old man remains in custody.

"He was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and is being questioned by detectives.

"Army bomb disposal experts examined the vehicle as a precautionary measure and subsequently declared it safe.

"Specialist officers are currently carrying out a detailed search and forensic examination of the scene."

Most residents had been allowed back into their homes last night.

But eight houses nearest the site of the explosion were still cordoned off.

CAPTION(S):

Fabian in the Army Fabian and Diana at 1996 passing out The wreckage of Mrs Fabian's Mazda
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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Mar 7, 2010
Words:405
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