By Lisa Carty
State Political Editor
November 4, 2007
THIEVES scaled a two-metre security fence and roamed unchecked through
State Parliament before making off with six security guard shirts.
The stunning security breach has horrified senior managers, who have
launched an internal investigation. One official said: "For all we know
they could have planted bombs."
The thieves entered the central Sydney building through an unlocked,
unalarmed fire exit that leads onto Hospital Road at the rear of
They were able to wander freely around the southern end of the building
- away from the security control room at its northern end - before
seizing the shirts from a laundry room.
The shirts had been cleaned and returned to Parliament for the next
shift of security guards.
It is not known how long the thieves stayed in the building, or where
they went, because no alarms were triggered.
It is believed whoever left the door unlocked also failed to activate
the alarm, but there is no suggestion it was more than a massive
Via a service lift, the thieves had easy access to all public areas of
the building, including the historic foyers fronting Macquarie Street,
as well as some non-public areas including the press gallery on level
The Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council were locked and alarmed
during the intruders' visits, leaving them unable to access the chambers
where MPs assemble for question time.
A manager, who did not want to be named, said it was absolutely
unbelievable that the door had been left unsecured.
"We're in shock," he said.
"The outside of the building is supposed to be checked by the guards
when they are on patrol.
"It's incredible that a door could be left unlocked and open and no one
noticed it except three people who broke in.
"Whether it was just a little bit open, or flapping in the breeze, will
be looked at as part of the investigation."
The manager said no one knew what the thieves got up to while they were
given free rein in one of the city's most important buildings.
"We have no idea what they did in the building but it seems we have had
a very, very lucky escape - it could have been far worse. It's actually
given us a few chills."
The break-in is thought to have occurred about 3am last Sunday, and was
detected by the security dayshift that discovered the open door.
Kings Cross police were called and recovered the shirts in Woolloomooloo
later that afternoon.
The breach is being investigated by Parliament's head of security,
Morgan Andrews, who refused to comment.
He will report to the clerks, who will report to lower house Speaker
Richard Torbay and upper house president Peter Primrose.
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