Skip to comments.Mystery man has no name, age or nationality[UK]
Posted on 10/07/2006 6:09:32 PM PDT by MrNationalist
AN alleged burglar, dubbed "the new piano man", has baffled police who have been unable to work out the man's name, age, nationality, or even his language.
The origin of the mysterious prisoner alleged to have broken into the same house three times is proving a major headache for authorities.
The man, who apparently speaks no English, is accused of breaking into the house near Ammanford, Carmarthenshire, to wash and cook food, and is alleged to have stolen a sewing kit.
But police have no idea where he is from, and have been completely unable to communicate.
The new Piano Man nickname follows on from a bizarre case last year after reports a hospital patient entertained staff with his remarkable talent for classical recitals. When medics gave him a pen and paper, he drew detailed pictures of a grand piano.
He refused to utter a single word after being found in a soaking wet suit on a beach near Sheerness, Kent. Eventually it was confirmed he was Bavarian Andreas Grassl, and returned to Germany.
The only clue to the new Piano Man points towards a small tribe at the foot of Morocco's Atlas mountains.
He was arrested two weeks ago, but magistrates in Llanelli were told yesterday that Dyfed-Powys Police and immigration officials had no idea about details.
He was referred to the Crown Court, as he was not able to give consent to a summary trial, but it is unclear how any proceedings there can go ahead unless an interpreter can be found.
Maps of the world and flags from different countries have been shown to the man, referred to in court as the prisoner or defendant, but he has not responded, police say.
The court heard an Arabic translator was been called in after the man spoke briefly, but the translator was unable to identify his dialect.
Magistrates remanded the man in custody until November 2, and attempts will continue to try to identify him.
The man's solicitor, Mike Reed, said after yesterday's hearing there had only been one clue as to his origins.
Describing a previous hearing he said, "The book [taken from the property] belonged to the owner, but certain writing in it had not been done by the owner.
"The prosecution believe the writing had been done by the man, because he'd been seen to discard the book.
"The police officer in question said she'd carried out extensive inquiries about the writing.
"She believed it was writing from a small tribe called the Berber, which live at the bottom of the Atlas mountains. That may be only conjecture, but there's been no subsequent progress."
He said he had never seen such a strange case, and that it would prove a sticky test for UK law.
"The system is not really great at coping with this situation.
"The problem is not that he's not identified - that's quite common. The problem is that he can't communicate.
"You have to have an interpreter when someone can't speak the language, but you can't do that if you don't know what the language is.
"There's very little communication.
"Normally even if you go abroad you can make progress with sign language, but this man hardly communicates at all.
"He only occasionally speaks a few words that are a foreign language.
"It's very puzzling because we don't know the reason."
He said the situation was becoming a chicken-and-egg scenario, adding, "Presumably immigration will deal with him ultimately.
"They've got more facilities and interpreters, but he can't be handed over to them until the court proceedings are over.
"We can't have a fair trial until we've got an interpreter.
"What the Crown Court will do with it I don't know."
A spokeswoman for Dyfed- Powys Police said, "We understand he can talk but he hasn't done.
"They've tried every language and everything they can think of.
"They've tried showing him a map of the world, and flags from different countries, but he's not responded.
"There's the idea of the Berber tribe, and that's about it."
Echoes of the 'Piano Man'
A man now known to be German Andreas Grassl, pictured, was picked up by Kent police in April, 2005, reportedly wearing a soaking wet suit and tie.
He spoke to nobody, but created a media storm around Medway Maritime Hospital after workers presented him with a pen and paper hoping he would identify himself.
He drew a detailed sketch of a grand piano and, when presented with one, reportedly played music brilliantly for hours, ranging from Tchaikovsky to The Beatles.
He did not speak for four months, and was dubbed the Piano Man amid countless rumours about his origin.
However after being identified as a German 20-year-old with psychological problems, the story soured, with one MP demanding Grassl should be billed for his four-month treatment, worth up to £50,000.
Another Casper Hauser. Every decade gets one.
Interesting article. HOW can they not get an interpreter? Just acroos the Chunnel is New Algeria (formerly called France). Berbers are from Algeria.
Have they introduced a piano into the interrogation?
He must have said a few words to get into the UK. Give me some pliars and I'll have him reciting the Magna Carta.
Obviously he is from the future.
Still laughing great! Trust me, I needed this, been a bad day.
Thanks for pointing that out.
He is from Krapistan
OK, so we have established he speaks Arabic, lets take him to the local mosque
and drop him off, with a "Welcome Home" note pinned to his shirt.
It probably hit him that England is on the metric system...
Is the young man autistic?