Pressure is mounting on an inquiry to reveal more names of undercover police officers

Police spies out of lives
Support us and go ad-free

New revelations have increased the pressure on an inquiry into undercover policing to publish the names, both cover and real, of all undercover officers operating over a 60-year period.

Abuse

Former undercover police officer Bob Lambert began infiltrating environmental and animal rights groups in 1984 and adopted the name ‘Bob Robinson’. He began a relationship with ‘Jacqui‘, an animal rights activist, and they continued to live together for the two years following the birth of their son. In 1988, Lambert made up a story that he was wanted by police and had to flee to Spain. But he simply resumed his Special Branch duties and went on to head the Special Demonstration Squad. It’s believed Lambert had at least four intimate relationships while undercover.

Lambert, who co-wrote the leaflet that led to the McLibel trial, was outed when challenged by five members of London Greenpeace after he’d spoken at an anti-racist conference.

‘Jacqui’ was subsequently awarded £425,000 in damages for the abuse suffered.

Her child, referred to as ‘TBS’, is now an adult and is suing the Metropolitan Police Service for “psychiatric injury”. This increases pressure on the inquiry to be more transparent.

Pattern of abuse

But ‘Jacqui’ was not alone. In 2011, eight women lodged claims, and in November 2015 the Met issued an apology to seven of them. Two months later, compensation was awarded in an out-of-court settlement.

Meanwhile, inquiry chair Sir John Mitting said [pdf, p36 (143)] he saw no relevancy in examining the early years of Special Demonstration Squad cases. But he was then shown [pdf, p36 (144)] that undercover police officer N297 [pdf], ‘Rick Gibson’, had relationships with at least two women as part of his cover during the 1970s.

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

Pressure

Operation Herne reported that more than 460 activist groups were spied upon, though that number is far higher if including other undercover groups operating over decades.

Undercover Research argues that:

those targeted need to know both the cover names used by the undercover officers and their real names.

Now, the Met admits that relationship abuse by undercover officers equates to torture. That – along with the TBS litigation, the ‘Gibson’ revelations, and now an appeal to the United Nations – increases pressure on the inquiry to publish all cover and real names of undercover officers.

Get Involved!

– Check out the Undercover Research Group and the Campaign Opposing Police Surveillance.

Featured Image via Tom Fowler

Support us and go ad-free

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us

Comments are closed