Police called to investigate dozens of crimes at Scottish Parliament

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POLICE have been called in to investigate a series of crimes committed at the Scottish Parliament.

New figures have revealed that dozens of offences have occurred at the Holyrood building in Edinburgh over the past three years, with the majority of them going unsolved.

Police have been called in to investigate a series of crimes committed at the Scottish Parliament.

Police have been called in to investigate a series of crimes committed at the Scottish Parliament.

Officers have probed a range of allegations including theft, a sexual crime, drug dealing, fireraising, malicious damage and the misuse of computers.

The figures have been revealed by Police Scotland in response to a freedom of information request. They show that of the 36 crimes that took place at the parliament since the start of 2016, 27 remain unsolved.

The offences include 14 thefts, five instances of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner, and six cases of vandalism.

An alleged sexual crime was reported to police in October, 2017, and there was a bomb hoax in January, 2016.

READ MORE: Man who tried setting fire to Scottish Parliament building is jailed for embezzlement

The thefts were carried out despite parliament officials spending millions of pounds on security measures to deter crooks.

There were also 22 crimes reported as having took place at the Scottish government’s headquarters - none of which have been solved.

Offences at St Andrew’s House in Edinburgh included handling obscene material, threatening communications and three thefts of bicycles.

A spokesman for the Scottish Conservatives said: “With a building as large and well-populated as the Scottish Parliament, it would be naive to expect there to be no crime at all.

“However, people will be alarmed that so many reports have been investigated.

“Holyrood is meant to set an example to the rest of the country, not somewhere criminals can operate without fear of detection.”

Police Scotland has a Scottish parliament police unit with a dedicated officer stationed at the building.

The £414 million building operates an airport-style scan and frisk system on visitors.

Last year, a knife-wielding drunk who sparked a terror alert by attempting to set fire to the building was jailed for 30 months

Piotr Swiatek poured fuel over the windows of the parliament and tried to light it before he was tackled by a brave police officer.

The 31-year-old Polish national pulled a large knife from his jacket as the officer approached him but he was taken to the ground and disarmed. The whole incident was caught on CCTV.

Superintendent Bob Paris, of Police Scotland’s Edinburgh Division, said: “Whenever a crime is reported, we always conduct a thorough investigation to establish the full circumstances, and where sufficient evidence exists, report our findings to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service.”

A Scottish Parliament spokesman said: “These are matters for Police Scotland.”

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