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Tory conference prankster 'had legitimate accreditation'

Concerns have been raised over how comedian Simon Brodkin was able to get so close to the PM and the cabinet

Pictured: Brodkin hands Theresa May a P45 during her conference speech at Manchester Central

The comedian who handed Theresa May a P45 during her speech at the Conservative party conference had legitimate accreditation.

Concerns have been raised about how comedian Simon Brodkin, who performs as Lee Nelson, was able to get so close to the prime minister during her address at the conference at Manchester Central. 

Chief Superintendent John O’Hare of Greater Manchester Police, said: “A man was detained by conference security during the Prime Minister’s speech.

“Officers attended and the man was arrested to prevent a breach of the peace and was released a short time later.

“The man had legitimate accreditation which granted him access to the conference site.

“In light of this we will be reviewing the accreditation process with the Conservative Party.

“Even with accreditation, everyone at the conference goes through airport-style searches before being allowed entry to the site.”

Shaun Hinds, CEO of Manchester Central, said: "As already confirmed by GMP, a man was detained by conference security following a disturbance during the Prime Minister's speech.

"At the time of the disturbance, conference security protocols were immediately enacted resulting in the individual being quickly ejected from the venue and handed over to GMP."

Brodkin has a history of pulling high profile stunts, having previously showered then FIFA president Sepp Blatter with banknotes and getting on stage with Kanye West during his Glastonbury headline set.

Business secretary Greg Clark said that serious questions must be asked about how the prankster got so close to the prime minister and how he obtained official conference accreditation.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, he said: “I don’t know which part of the weakness of the system it was but it clearly needs to be established. We need to look into it and find out what happened and make sure it can never happen again.”

Speaking earlier on Sky News, Clark said the man “could have had violent intent”.

For more on this read today's Editor's Blog: A prime example of what can go wrong

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