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Peace campaigner, 85, classified by police as ‘domestic extremist’

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Paul Lewis and Rob Evans
London Guardian
June 26, 2010

For John Catt, protest has never been about chaining himself to a railing or blocking a road in an act of civil disobedience. The 85-year-old peace campaigner’s far milder form of dissent typically involves turning up at a demonstration with his daughter, Linda, taking out his sketch pad and drawing the scene.

However this, it seems, has been enough for police to classify Catt and his 50-year-old daughter “domestic extremists”, put their personal information on a clandestine national database and record their political activities in minute detail.

Secret files have revealed how police have systematically documented their political activities, undermining official claims that only hardcore activists were placed under surveillance.

The National Public Order Intelligence Unit (NPOIU) recorded their presence at more than 80 lawful demonstrations over four years, logging details such as their appearance, and slogans on their T-shirts.

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This article was posted: Saturday, June 26, 2010 at 3:46 am





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