Agencies warned by Scotland Yard after bomb scare

Scotland Yard this week warned PR agencies of the dangers of sending unsolicited gimmicks in the post, after a package caused a full-scale bomb scare at Canary Wharf.

A promotional package sent by PR agency Dutton Merrifield to The European Medicines Evaluation Agency (EMEA) saw the bomb squad called out, and the entire floor of a Canary Wharf building evacuated, following an alert by security staff.

EMEA press officer Martin Harvey said the product – a mechanical toy – arrived in a plain white Jiffy bag, with a handwritten address and no visible sender details.

He slammed the agency for not taking more care: ‘What should have been a clever PR gimmick backfired.

A police spokesman urged agencies to use ‘common sense’ in the type of product they send and how they send it.

Dutton Merrifield MD David Merrifield said: ‘I regret there being some kind of confusion.’

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