Alison speaking as part of International Women’s day event

Alison is speaking about her experiences being targeted for an intimate relationship by undercover officer Mark Jenner. Her speech will form part of the International Women’s Day meeting:

WOMEN AGAINST THE STATE by Unite London & Eastern Region, WEDNESDAY 8 MARCH 6pm. This is a free event, but you need to book a ticket here.

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The extensive undercover policing scandal was first revealed by Alison and other women who discovered their former partners were undercover officers. It seems the majority of undercover officers had deceitful relationships while undercover. These relationships shored-up the cover-stories of the officers, and the extensive pattern of abuse reveals institutional sexism within the Metropolitan Police and other police forces.

Alison, along with other women affected, have formed part of the fight back against the infiltration of social justice campaigning groups. Her legal action, with seven other women, led to an historic apology by the Metropolitan Police, where they admitted that they had abused their human rights.

They admitted “officers, acting undercover whilst seeking to infiltrate protest groups, entered into long-term intimate sexual relationships with women which were abusive, deceitful, manipulative and wrong” and that “these relationships were a violation of the women’s human rights, an abuse of police power and caused significant trauma”.

Alison and the other women are now core participants in the Undercover Policing Inquiry, which is still in its preliminary stages, two years in. Other core participants include the Lawrence family, who were spied on by police when they were campaigning for justice for their son, and trades union activists who were put on an employment blacklist by the police for their political activities.

It is women like Alison bravely speaking out that have started to reveal the true extent of this political policing scandal which spans nearly 60 years. We highly recommend that you take this opportunity to hear her speak.

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Inquiry Progress Report 2 published

We are pleased to publish our second progress report on the Undercover Policing Inquiry.

At the moment, the Inquiry is in its preliminary phase, and the participants are experiencing the Inquiry as extensive legal arguments between their lawyers and the Inquiry team, conducted mostly via email.  Hearings and the taking of evidence are delayed and yet to start.

We hope that our briefings can help Inquiry core participants, press, and public alike, make sense of what is going on in this crucial inquiry.

This Progress Report contains sections on:

  • The confirmation of officers,
  • New core participants,
  • Protocols,
  • Witness evidence process, costs,
  • The release of cover names, groups, and individual’s files

If you find this report helpful, please look back over the other briefings and reports we have written on the Undercover Policing Inquiry.

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Deceived into relationships with undercover cops: Powerful new short film

We are pleased to release today a powerful new short film, made by Reel News, showing four women talking about their startlingly similar experiences of being deceived into relationships with undercover police.

It is being premiered this week at the Lush Summit, where “Alison” and “Andrea“, two women deceived into relationships with undercover police, are talking live and Police Spies Out of Lives is exhibiting.

In this film, the women talk about the experience of their most intimate lives being invaded by undercover police, the effect this has had on them, and about their ongoing fight for truth, accountability, and a complete cessation of these abuses.

These women’s most intimate lives were deeply infiltrated by these officers, living with them as life partners, attending family funeral’s, and promising to start a family. They left the women in similar ways, faking a nervous breakdown, and disappearing which was deeply upsetting for the women. It left them wondering who their partners were, and indeed who they were. Alison reveals “The damage that I experienced and the acute paranoia I experienced has subsided now, but is still there’

Lisa  explains just part of the enormous psychological abuse that these relationships have caused, and one of the questions that these women are left with. “I had grown and changed over that time with someone who was fictional, if they were fictional what did that make me now?”

In legal actions about undercover relationships, the Met has asked for judgment to be entered against them, implying that the relationships were undertaken with the express or tacit knowledge of other officers. Kate asserts “You didn’t just have a relationship with a man who didn’t exist, you had a relationship with a man who didn’t exist, and a back room, and the managers, and the superior officers who were making the decisions about that relationship, and the support teams who were following him around on your holidays, and people who were listening to your phone calls, and the people who were reading your emails”

All these women have been involved in legal actions against the Metropolitan police because of these relationships. They won a comprehensive apology from the police, yet despite this, and the fact that a public inquiry started in 2015, they have still not received any information from the police about what happened to them. Helen tells us: “We still have no answers as to why this abusive behaviour was allowed to happen. We have had absolutely no disclosure”

These political policing units have been systematically abusing women since 1968. The women in this video, and others, continue their brave fight for truth, accountability, and to stop this abusive practice, through legal courts and through the public Inquiry. Helen explains “Ultimately what we want to do is make sure these abuses can never happen again.”

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Coming this week: Film and talks

A brand-new short film from Police Spies Out of Lives made with the help of Reel News. It will be launched at 12noon on Wednesday 8th February simultaneously here on our website and live at the Lush Summit in London.

On Thursday 9th February, the Human Rights room at the Lush Summit will host an hour-long session (also at 12 noon) with two women, Alison & Andrea, talking about their personal experiences of relationships with #spycops.

The Lush Summit takes place at the Leathermarket building in East London. Entry is free, but you need to register The Human Rights room is one of many showcasing the work done by various campaign groups that Lush has supported financially; the others include Animal Rights and Environmental campaigns.

Thank you to REELNEWS and Lush for their continued support.

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Activists hold press conference telling of being targeted by spycops in Ireland

Mark Kennedy in Dublin with Sarah Hampton & Kim Bryan

Yesterday, activists targeted by UK undercover police, held a press conference in Ireland, to highlight the activities of these undercover officers in Ireland. Among these people was Kate Wilson, who was targeted by Mark Kennedy for an intimate relationship and is one of the women involved in the eight women case we supported, traveled with Mark Kennedy to protest events in Ireland.

A statement was also read out written by an American woman, Sarah Hampton, who has just received an apology from the Metropolitan police for her relationship with Mark Kennedy. She spoke about the effect of the abusive relationship on her, saying  “Finding out that Mark was an undercover police officer brought about a deep depression that seemed impossible to navigate, there were times I almost gave up completely. The process of seeking justice on this case has felt at times belittling, intimidating and downright scary.” She went on to ask “Who gave permission for a British undercover officer to form and have a relationship with a US national in Ireland, in the UK, in Scotland and in Spain?”

Kate Wilson explained some of the issues around undercover police in Ireland: “I found out in 2010 that my partner was an undercover officer and since then information has just kept coming out about the practices of undercover policing in the UK. We now know that since 1968 they have been running top secret political policing units, starting with the Metropolitan police in London but also other forces around the country. Activists have been finding information about those officers. The state hasn’t actually yet given us any information that has not be already found out by researchers and whistle-blowers getting that information to the public.

We already know that a large number of undercover officers were involved in the kind of long term intimate relationship that I had. Some of them even fathered children. We know that they were spying on the families of the victims of police violence. People who had been killed by the police or whose murders had not be properly investigated.

And we know that they were working with the Crown Prosecution Service and were responsible for a number of miscarriages of justice. Mark Kennedy alone, who was the man that I was involved with, is responsible for over 56 unsafe convictions. These were convictions that were overturned because of the role of undercover police in those cases. People were wrongfully convicted.

We are all here because our privacy and political rights were violated by these British police officers here in Ireland. We think its really important that people know these things happened in Ireland and affected Irish citizens as well.

There is currently no information and no investigation in Ireland. So we are here to talk about some of the things that happen here in Ireland. Yesterday the Metropolitan police issued a public apology to Sarah Hampton who is a woman who was deceived into a relationship with Mark Kennedy that started here in Ireland.”

Kim Bryan, spoke about how Mark Kennedy paid for and facilitated her educational group, Trapese, to visit Ireland before the G8 in 2005, encouraging the 200 people who attended the G8 protests in Scotland to do so. She said “I think it raises a very serious question because Mark Kennedy was essentially coercing, manipulating and manufacturing situations which meant Irish citizens then took part in things that were being manufactured by a British spy who was operating on Irish soil.”

Jason Kilpatrick, an activist who was also targeted by Kennedy in Ireland, said “We have been informing the minister for months now that this British officer created serious human rights violations that the police admit. Kennedy was here five or six times in the Republic of Ireland. Were there wrongful or miscarriages of justice here in Ireland? That has to be investigated. That has to be made public. And so far Minister Fitzgerald has not even shown that she understands these issues.”

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