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back to article Want to get into 10 Downing Street? Get a Lithuanian ID card

A serial burglar from Stratford, East London used nothing more complicated than his girlfriend's Lithuanian identity card to get into 10 Downing Street. Obadiah Marius, 44, was freed on a suspended sentence from Southwark Crown Court yesterday, after pleading guilty to burglary over the incident. In June last year he and his …

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Oh for goodness sake

"Southwark Crown Court sentenced Marius to a 12-month sentence suspended for 18 months while he seeks treatment for his drug problems. The judge described him as a "persistent rogue", but offered him a final chance and a residential drug treatment order."

Why do we keep on giving these people another chance?

When are we going to wake up and realise that some people are just bad uns?

My favourite is when someone is caught driving while banned and they extend the ban. WTF?? The ban wasn't a deterrent in the first place so why will it be now?

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Silver badge

Never in Sir Humphrey's day...

Poor old Sir Humphrey had the misfortune to have his pass subjected to the most searching scrutiny when he fell out of favour with Jim Hacker. How standards have fallen since those golden days...

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Black Helicopters

Right...

So people democratically protesting against Heathrows third runway get arrested under the Terrorism Act. A bloke fakes his way into 10 Downing St (albeit with a legitimate ID card - oh, the irony!) and gets arrested as a political protestor!

If I get caught doing 75mph on the motorway, what do I get charged with? Regicide?

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Linux

Scary laws

"originally arrested under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act which restricts political protest within a kilometre of Parliament."

Does anyone else find it scary that it is illegal in a country that is suppose to be democratic with free speech to have such a law in place. Does that law not circumvent the purpose of a democratic society.

I also agree with the previous statement about if you are driving on a suspended license increasing the suspension when caught again is not a deterent. Take the car and auction it off. If it belongs to someone else they have a choice, file charges of theft or lose the car.

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Unhappy

Oh My

"They were originally arrested under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act which restricts political protest within a kilometre of Parliament."

I had realized things were getting bad in the UK, but seriously? You can't protest somewhere that the MPs might hear/see you? You must be terrorists! All of you!

..as much crap gets thrown about the US, at least you can still protest in front of the white house and the congress building. Well.. for now. And here in Canada, our Prime Ministers defend their own home (Or rather, their wives do.. with lamps)

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Burglary?

"A person is guilty of burglary if, having entered a building or part of a building as a trespasser, he steals or attempts to steal anything in the building, or inflicts or attempts to inflict grievous bodily harm on any person in the building." (Theft Act 1968)

So what did he actually steal? (Or whom did he hit?)

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Boffin

Security

two kinds of watchers to handle physical security, [1] human and [2] machine.

[1] security personnel are usually badly paid and badly treated; therefore, they are usually apathetic or passive-aggressive, and unwilling to exercise any initiative in their job. it is usually pretty easy to get past a human checkpoint. to address this, they need decent pay, training, effective leadership, and a stake in whatever they are guarding (so, they're more likely to win a lottery than get any or all of those).

[2] machines are not too good at recognition, especially biometric recognition. additionally, a machine watcher is predictable and rule-based, and incapable of initiative; therefore, ways can be found around most automated checkpoints. the watcher mechanism has to change periodically, to void possible developing workarounds; this is expensive and painful.

neither method is perfect, but a combination of the two would mostly cover the failings of either. this requires careful thought, and effective planning and implementation, with continuing maintenance and review; all of which rarely ever happens anywhere these days.

therefore, we are doomed: stoned hippy terrorists will demonstrate inside the PM's residence, with placards made from hemp, and sing "Kum ba yah".

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Of course this would never have happened...

...if we had ID cards - oh hold on, something's wrong there.

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er, yes, burglary (@spleen)

You're quite right, the offence of burglary is not made out under s.9(1)(a) TA 1968 - but it is under s.9(1)(b) which covers entry with *intent* to steal - so its still burglary.

But the sentence is clearly manifestly excessive, as no reasonable judge could have failed to give him an absolute discharge had he properly directed himself in accordance with the Mitigation (Chutzpah) Act.

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Anonymous Coward

Give him a job.

Pen testing physical security once he completes rehab .

He's done more for security than those who are being paid for it now.On second thought forget rehab he'll work harder for drugs.

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Paris Hilton

Friday ROFL

Nice to see there are still misguided fools who think this is a democracy.

If it was a democracy we would have elected our leader and our head of state.

PM - Elected by his party

Head of State - Not elected at all

Iran is more democratic than us.

Paris Hilton because the same amount of people voted for her to be PM as voted for Gordon Brown.

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Anonymous Coward

hmmmm

they HAVE to keep giving final chances because there is no cells to put them in!! "Yes you go to jail for a while...ooo wait sorry residence is full...off you go home then!"

we have more to fear about driving down a road doing 5mph more than the speed limit than stealing something...good old british law

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A favour, please

El Reg, could you please stop printing this embarassing nonsense? It's hard enough being a Brit abroad without you and your ild dishing up every embarassing lapse that Britain has to suffer.

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Boffin

@Jamie

People caught driving without licence, tax, insurance and/or MoT have *normally* stolen the car. See the Magistrate's Blog for details and intelligent discussion.

I'd agree with crushing any car driven without an MoT, and flogging off the uninsured car unless it was stolen from someone not known to the defendant, but theft is the main issue.

Aaargh, a serious comment! The nerd icon.

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@Jamie

"Does anyone else find it scary that it is illegal in a country that is suppose to be democratic with free speech to have such a law in place."

Yes.

That and people getting arrested under SOCPA or the Prevention of Terrorism Act for what is essentially trespass.

Still, if it gets Gordon arrested too, maybe it's not all bad.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2007/dec/13/humanrights.world

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@Jamie

Several people think this law is scary

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/comedy/markthomas.shtml

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Happy

Another chance

"Why do we keep on giving these people another chance?"

Oh I know, every 4 years we give someone a chance in 10 (or 11) Downing Street and they always mess it up.

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Happy

Re: Scary laws

"originally arrested under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act which restricts political protest within a kilometre of Parliament."

"Does anyone else find it scary that it is illegal in a country that is suppose to be democratic with free speech to have such a law in place. Does that law not circumvent the purpose of a democratic society."

It really isn't much of a restriction imposed by SOCPA. You merely have to apply for permission a week in advance. Try and find a copy of Mark Thomas' My Life in Serious Organised Crime.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/comedy/markthomas.shtml

http://www.markthomasinfo.com/audio/default.asp

Apparently the ghost of Sir Winston Churchill applied to hold a demonstration (about free speech) and was given permission. Having received permission for one demonstration Mark Thomas was given a police escort through the middle of an unlawful demonstration by anarchists. He also holds the record for the most lawful demonstrations within 24 hours.

Mass lone demonstrations are held on the third Wednesday of each month.

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Pirate

@ Spleen! :)

Attempted burglary?

Or entering unauthorised (well sortof and sortof was authorised) buildings with intent..

how did the Sec. Guard let him in...what sort of security is there nowadays if a lithuanian ID pass lets him through!!!! =O

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Alert

@ Jamie/Chris

You're getting the picture:- dissent aimed at NuLab is "Serious & Organised Crime". (Burglary is trivial, and doesn't merit a penalty).

We don't get tax allowances, 'cos we know that means we keep more of our own money: instead, we pay high taxes but can claim "benefits" which means we are receiving munificence by the benevolence of the Supreme Leader. This way of course, most will see Broon as being oh-so-generous, and will be afraid to vote against him as they are scared of losing these "benefits".

Dependancy culture deliberately encouraged to perpetuate NuLab's being in office?

Surely the Great One would never be that cynical - would he?

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Unhappy

@ John A Blackley

... try being a Brit at home mate - it puts "embarassing" into the same league as lego.

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Anonymous Coward

@Ben

"how did the Sec. Guard let him in...what sort of security is there nowadays if a lithuanian ID pass lets him through!!!! =O"

The Sec guard was an illegal immigrant from Lithuania, given his job by the Home Office to guard the PM of course....

He better watch out.. Jacqui wont be pleased!!

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Paris Hilton

@sean

@sean surely you jest about this so called leniency , but what you appear to fail to appreciate is that unlike you , Judges have a very extensive daily reading list of things like Home Office Sentence Guidelines and revisions , which seems to change faster then most babies diapers and the passing wind out of Westminster's political rear end , a dry compendium of medical treatments available for all HM prisoners at various prisons , along with how many empty cells are available on a given day which is smaller then one percent for some strange reason called over crowding , along with numerous other weighty common and Westminster New Law , peer review common case law documents that pile up in their in tray in between court cases !

I wonder , did you not also take into consideration the time held whilst in custody of the police and bound over until trial date in remand without bail from the time the charges were laid , the usual Public Prosecutors as to what is doable in court as to the usual police over inflated charge wish list without truthful supporting evidence !

Life , is never as simple as we wish it to be , because being human always makes it complicated as creating mountains from mole hills !

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Black Helicopters

"Arrested Outside"

Well, that was a bit bloody late, then, wasn't it?

What a pathetic, arrogant, self-important, ego-bloated waste of time and money prosecuting this guy. What would have been wrong with kicking him out into the street?

The UK needs to have the vast bubble of its ego pricked. It can't run an airport, it can't keep data safe... ... ...

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Thumb Up

Hooray!

I predict an influx of Lithuanian tourists to UK. Imagine the advertising slogans: Meet PM of UK for free, just do not forget your ID card :) Since I am Lithuanian and I do have my ID card, I am tempted also, maybe it works as a free pass to museums also :)

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This post has been deleted by a moderator

Flame

Being drunk or high makes you look as anyone else - in 10 Downing Street

this guy had a drug problem and the guard took his Lithuanian ID for an access pass - it seems if you just look wasted enough, whether drunk or high these guards don´t even bother to check more thoroughly. Probably most visitors appear somewhat tipsy when they visit the heart of fortress Britannica. After some lunch booze get back to work to make crucial decisions how to make the world a better place.

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Joke

Old news?

A Lithuanian? Big deal. Didn't a Scott get in there recently?

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Dead Vulture

@Chris

"as much crap gets thrown about the US, at least you can still protest in front of the white house and the congress building."

Pull the other one...or better still ask Cindy Sheehan.

Dead bird for democracy.

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This post has been deleted by its author

I remember my parents taking us to look at number 10

We strolled along , waved to the "coppers" had a look and left.

Last time I walked past downing street it was a massive steel fence looking like an ex-East German Border post relocated. So now English tourists are unable to visit one of the important national sights yet foreigners can just waltz in through the back door. I know Blair and Brown are a bit younger than me and "skooling" was starting to go down hill, but how did they miss the fact that Animal Farm and 1984 are works of fiction, not instruction manuals, unless they got the non-fiction tag confused.

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