The hearing in the case of a social justice activist deceived into a two-year intimate relationship by undercover officer begins today before the specialist Investigatory Powers Tribunal set up to hear complaints about state surveillance. Kate Wilson argues that the undercover officer Mark Kennedy, who infiltrated environment and left wing campaigns between 2003 and 2010, breached her human rights.
According to the campaign group Police Spies Out of Our Lives, the hearing is the ‘climax of an epic ten-year battle for the truth’. ‘Thousands of pages of secret documents have been disclosed to the Tribunal and will be examined in an open hearing which seeks to establish the full extent of the human rights breaches, and the extent of the involvement of senior officers in those abuses.’ the group says. ‘The police are expected rely on a claim that poor supervision allowed the abuses to take place without the knowledge of senior police officers.’
‘The police want us to believe that a top intelligence unit was so incapable of interpreting basic human interactions that they had no idea that we were boyfriend and girlfriend. I just don’t believe that,’ said Kate Wilson. ‘My relationship with Mark Kennedy was documented in great detail in their secret reports for over 18 months. I am one of many dozens of women deceived into this kind of relationship by deployed undercover police officers. They used sex with women to gather ‘intelligence’. The evidence suggests a ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ approach by senior officers embedded in a culture of misogyny and mission creep. I have no doubt that the police are institutionally sexist.’