Guardian investigative editor Paul Lewis and investigative reporter Rob Evans detail their decade-long investigation into undercover policing. At least 139 officers were given fake identities to monitor the inner workings of more than 1,000 political groups. Jessica, a former member of one of those groups, describes the impact of discovering that a man with whom she began a relationship in 1992 was actually an undercover cop
In 2010, Mark Stone, an environmental activist, was on holiday with his girlfriend when she discovered a passport for a man called Mark Kennedy in the glove box of their van. The man she was in a relationship with was actually a police officer who for seven years had lived deep undercover at the heart of the environmental protest movement. When the story became public, senior officers tried to quell the outcry, insisting that Kennedy was merely a rogue officer. In fact, the opposite was true. Kennedy was just one of many footsoldiers who had been routinely infiltrating political groups, mostly on the left, since as far back as 1968.
Anushka Asthana talks to the Guardian’s Paul Lewis and Rob Evans about their decade-long work with activists to investigate police spies. Officers’ deployments typically lasted four to five years, with them living alongside political campaigners, forming deep bonds of friendship, or having romantic liaisons with their targets. At least three of the police spies fathered children with women they met while undercover. The existence of a squad of officers sent deep undercover in political groups was so secret that many of the UK’s most senior police officers were oblivious until they began reading the reports in the Guardian 10 years ago.
Audio | The Guardian
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