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MPs criticise undercover police for sexual relationships

At least five women are taking legal action against the Metropolitan police, accusing it of causing emotional turmoil and breaching their right to a private life.

The women were deceived into having long-term intimate relationships with undercover police officers who were infiltrating activist groups.

One of the women, who had a relationship with undercover officer Mark Kennedy, exposed by Nottingham activists in October 2010 (see PN 2528), told the house of commons home affairs select committee on 5 February: ‘We are talking about degrading and inhumane treatment. I think what happened to us has been akin to psychological torture.’

At the end of February, the select committee issued a highly critical report, saying: ‘In matters which concern the right of the state to intrude so extensively and intimately into the lives of citizens, we believe that the current legal framework is ambiguous to such an extent that it fails adequately to safeguard the fundamental rights of the individuals affected.’

Babies’ identities stolen

Earlier in February, the Guardian revealed that the Met stole the identities of an estimated 80 dead children and issued fake passports in their names for use by undercover police officers.

The select committee called this practice ‘ghoulish and disrespectful’, and warned that it could have placed bereaved families in danger of retaliation.’

At the beginning of the year, justice Tugendhat granted the police’s request to have the women’s case against the Met held in secret. He mentioned James Bond in his remarks.

Topics: Infiltration