Renowned snapper acting suspiciously...

MBY photographer Lester McCarthy was boarded and searched yesterday by Hampshire Marine Police in their new anti-terrorist RIB.

Lester was taking photographs of the new Queen Victoria liner moored at Ocean Liner Quay, Southampton, and was well outside the ship’s 50m security zone, but the officers’ suspicion was aroused because they could not believe anyone else was out in yesterday’s conditions.

Lester said: “I had my black hat and full black waterproofs on. I must have looked very suspicious!

“Two police officers boarded and commenced a thorough search. The first locker revealed mask, flippers and snorkel – just right for attaching limpet mines, but I think I left them with the feeling that the boat was well-equipped and they failed to find the AK47 stowed in the waterski locker.”

“We didn’t expect anyone madder than us to be out here,” one of the officers told him.

Winds yesterday in the Solent were gusting 45 knots. Lester was in his much-loved 22ft open Boston Whaler

Lester said: “I was only down to check on the boat but I thought I might as well take it out. The rain was pelting down – normally some paperwork would have been written down but all information was relayed back to HQ over the intercom, word by word.”

Solent marine police recently launched Project Kraken, asking leisure boaters to ring a hotline if they see anything suspicious in the area.

Contact: Hampshire Constabulary, quoting Project Kraken.
Tel: 0845 045 45 45.
Email project.kraken@hampshire.pnn.police.uk