‘Control yourself’: Judge warns ‘bomb hoax’ barrister over court conduct

Michael Shrimpton on the USS Enterprise in 2006
Michael Shrimpton on the USS Enterprise in 2006

A barrister who is charged with calling in a fake London Olympics bomb hoax has been told to ‘control himself’ in court.

Michael Shrimpton, from Jusons Glebe, Wendover, was reprimanded by the judge who told him in open court, ‘Control yourself.’

He was representing himself at Southwark Crown Court but faced the wrath of Judge Alistair McCreath while cross-examining a witness.

Barry Burton, who was Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Defence Secretary at the time, told the court he spoke to Shrimpton on the telephone on April 19, 2012.

“He said he had concerns about threats to the London Games and to the Queen,” said Mr Burton.

“He said a mass nuclear weapon had entered the UK. He said four other weapons were removed from the submarine Kursk when it sank and he explained one had been obtained by the German terrorist organisation DVD.

‘He said one of the weapons caused the tsunami disaster in Japan.”

Mr Burton said Shrimpton spoke in a calm manner and told him he knew William Hague and former Defence Secretary, Liam Fox, but Mr Burton said he had not heard Mr Fox mention Shrimpton.

He told the court: “He said he was a lawyer with an involvement in national security and he was a Conservative.”

Mr Burton believed he was a hoax caller but told the Olympic Security Authority and the cabinet office.

Under cross-examination, Shrimpton told Mr Burton, who has worked for the Ministry of Defence for 36 years, that he had said there was a possibility a nuclear warhead had been smuggled into London.

Mr Burton replied: “What I heard from the caller was that a weapon had been moved to the UK.”

Shrimpton asked Mr Burton if an E3 plane is capable of carrying detectors which can pick up nuclear warheads but Mr Burton replied: “I don’t know.”

Shrimpton said: “Someone at the Cabinet Office grounded the E3’s’.”

Mr Burton replied: I don’t know.”

When Shrimpton asked Mr Burton if he accepted that a number of nuclear weapons had gone missing over recent years, Mr Burton replied: “I have no knowledge of that” - prompting Judge McCreath to sharply reprimand him.

The judge said: “I have no idea where this is going. You have been a barrister for a number of years and you cannot use witnesses as part of your speeches. They are here to answer questions.

‘I will not have conspiracy theories bandied around the court unless they are genuinely real.

“You must control yourself.

“The guillotine is very close to your neck.”