An Australian Senator managed to smuggle in a pipe bomb into the Parliament House.
In order to prove his point about the security getting lax on the premises, Sen. Bill Heffernan, who represents the ruling Liberal Party, managed to gain entry to the building with a pipe bomb placed causally in a plastic bag. Though he clarified that the pipe bomb was fake, he made sure the pipe bomb appeared as legitimate as possible.
The 71-year-old wheat farmer said he had “brought this through security: a pipe bomb.”
From a flimsy plastic shopping bag, he proceeded to pull out what looked like a pipe bomb and several sticks of dynamite taped together. The Senator was explaining how he used to blast tree stumps on a farm, when he took out the supposedly dangerous and life–threatening explosive that should have never been allowed to pass through security in the first place.
Heffernan is a member of the Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee, which at the time was questioning Australian Federal Police Commissioner Tony Negus about routine police and security issues, reported Yahoo.
Upon showing just how ridiculously easy was to bring in such a deadly device, Negus was forced to accept that there was nothing to stop someone bringing explosive ingredients into the building through security.
“Under the current arrangements, that is a risk, yes,” Negus managed to say.
Interestingly, Negus later admitted that Sen. Heffernan had indeed warned him that he would produce the fake bomb.
“I was satisfied that it was inert,” Negus said.
But senators had not been warned and, as expected, there was quite an uproar in the pit. However, they quickly gained composure and committee chairman Ian Macdonald even joked, “I just hope you are not doing anything illegal to which we are accessories,” reported Reuters.
Heffernan said that new cost-saving security protocols being tested, which exempt politicians and their staff members from searches upon entering Parliament House, had allowed him to easily smuggle the device into the building in a plastic bag. “Up until this point, most people working in this building know that it’s safe. I don’t think it any longer is and to demonstrate that this morning I brought in what could be… a pipe bomb,” said the Senator.
Incidentally, members of the public, diplomats and journalists are still subject to traditional searches under the new measures, but politicians and their staff is exempt. Well now it would be safe to predict that such rules, born out of budgetary constraints would be given a serious do–over.
[Image via Andrew Greene | Twitter]