Police admit to knowing undercover officer was having sex with activist, campaigners say

UK police have admitted that supervisors knew about a long-term sexual relationship between an undercover of...

Posted: Sep 21, 2018 4:52 PM
Updated: Sep 21, 2018 4:52 PM

UK police have admitted that supervisors knew about a long-term sexual relationship between an undercover officer and an environmental activist, campaigners said Friday.

The activist, Kate Wilson, had a two-year intimate relationship with Mark Kennedy, who was known to her as Mark Stone. She only found out in 2010 that he had been an undercover officer tasked with infiltrating environmental protest groups.

Activism

Crime, law enforcement and corrections

Espionage

International relations and national security

Law enforcement

National security

Policing and police forces

Society

The Investigatory Powers Tribunal is due to hear Wilson's case against the Metropolitan Police and the National Police Chiefs' Council, alleging breaches of the Human Rights Act, on October 3. The tribunal investigates claims that the police have abused covert surveillance powers and infringed people's human rights.

The admission that Kennedy's supervisors knew about their sexual relationship and allowed it to continue was made in legal papers submitted by the police ahead of the October 3 hearing, according to a document released by campaign group Police Spies Out of Lives on Friday.

It appears to contradict a public apology made by police in 2015 which said such relationships by undercover officers were "abusive, deceitful, manipulative and wrong," would "never be authorized in advance" and were the result of "failures of supervision and management."

According to the Police Spies Out of Lives document, police have "admitted to the Tribunal that an as yet unknown number of cover officers and a line manager knew about and acquiesced to the relationship."

It added: "This means at least eight police officers were complicit in deceiving Ms Wilson in a long-term, intimate relationship, and suggests a deliberate strategy, and not a 'failure of supervision' as claimed."

Police have also conceded in the legal papers that Kennedy's relationship with Wilson violated her right to live without torture or inhuman or degrading treatment, and that this breach was made worse by the complicity of his managers, the document said.

Wilson: 'About institutional sexism'

Wilson is one of eight women to have brought a case against the police over undercover relationships, with legal support provided by Police Spies Out of Lives.

"It has taken me eight painful years to discover that managing officers really did conspire to deceive and abuse me, something the police had consistently denied," Wilson said in a statement Friday.

"The wider questions for society here are massive, this is about institutional sexism, senior police officers sanctioning sexual abuse, and the systematic violation of human rights because of political beliefs, and we still don't have the whole truth.

"The police should not be allowed to evade the serious questions this case raises. Until we have a proper court hearing that examines the evidence, they will always be able to lie."

Wilson tells how she fell in love with Kennedy -- whom she describes as "charismatic and romantic" and sharing many of her interests and dreams -- after meeting him at a public meeting about holding protests at the upcoming G8 summit in Scotland. He became her lover and they lived together for more than a year, she said.

"He visited my parents on many occasions, and he attended my grandmother's 90th birthday. He was my partner in just about everything, for two years," she said. After they separated, the pair remained "close friends" until 2010, she said.

Compensation payouts

Scotland Yard's apology in 2015 was part of its settlement of a civil case brought by eight women, Wilson among them, who had been deceived by undercover officers. It was accompanied by an agreement to pay compensation.

While the other seven settled, Wilson continued her case and won a High Court battle against the Met Police in 2016 after the force withdrew its defense.

The Met said Friday that it would be "inappropriate" to comment on Wilson's ongoing civil action at the tribunal.

"The (Met) has made clear its position on long-term sexual relationships known to have been entered into by some undercover officers in the past. Those relationships were wrong and should not have happened," it said.

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1980337

Reported Deaths: 51418
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings2621119933
Queens2613019549
Suffolk1920063307
Nassau1759193106
Bronx1735626372
New York1307874308
Westchester1248812238
Erie811411694
Richmond700891744
Monroe603251034
Orange45755782
Rockland45439941
Onondaga35694661
Dutchess27720433
Albany23473343
Oneida21329497
Niagara17999332
Broome17239348
Saratoga14292160
Ulster12882241
Schenectady12332192
Rensselaer10567136
Putnam1011391
Chautauqua8304132
Chemung7081133
Oswego693990
Ontario681191
Steuben6231141
St. Lawrence615594
Sullivan606168
Cayuga582590
Jefferson542463
Wayne519667
Cattaraugus509880
Genesee5028121
Herkimer4896107
Clinton450132
Madison427385
Tompkins403449
Fulton402186
Livingston397058
Montgomery3861115
Columbia380999
Cortland352260
Tioga335758
Warren334956
Wyoming322651
Otsego315646
Allegany315483
Greene309474
Chenango304874
Washington282655
Orleans273483
Lewis243233
Franklin238312
Delaware213736
Seneca185756
Schoharie153815
Essex149326
Yates110126
Schuyler98313
Hamilton3012
Unassigned172100
Out of NY0216
Rome
Cloudy
45° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 40°
Binghamton
Cloudy
37° wxIcon
Hi: 40° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 30°
Rome
Cloudy
45° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 40°
Rome
Cloudy
45° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 40°
WKTV Radar
WKTV Temperatures
WKTV Severe Weather
Saluting Those Who Are Proud 2 Serve
Enter the Rock Your Body Giveaway from Alivana Aesthetics
Looking for work or looking to hire? Check out the WKTV Job Fair!