Prosecution threat to security breach reporter

A staff reporter at Sunday Times Scotland may face criminal charges after deliberately breaching security at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh.

A Lothian and Borders Police spokesman told Press Gazette on Wednesday: “A report outlining the circumstances of the incident will be submitted to the procurator fiscal in Edinburgh.”

Press Gazette understands reporter Paul Lamarra could face charges of wasting police time, and breach of the peace – for causing fear and alarm.

Sunday Times Scotland editor Les Snowdon insisted his paper had been acting in the public interest. “Our investigation raises serious issues of security, as that area of Edinburgh is home to two of Scotland’s most important buildings,” he said.

Lamarra entered the palace wearing a hard hat and carrying a clipboard. He was able to gain access to restricted areas unchallenged for 20 minutes.

Lamarra also claimed to have photographed plans of a private wing which, he said, in the hands of terrorists, could have placed the royals at serious risk.

Prince Charles was due to stay at the palace 72 hours after the incident, which came two weeks before the Queen is due to take up official residence.

By Hamish Mackay

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