Wednesday, Oct 28th, 2009
The increasingly grumpy argument regarding who is allowed to photograph and keep files on whom in this sceptred isle – and who is then allowed to see such files – took a new twist today. It emerged that a person featured on a police headshot gallery of “extremist” arms protesters is actually believed by many activists to have been a spy for the weapons industry.
On Monday the Guardian published a copy of a police “spotter card”, said to have been dropped by a copper at an arms-fair protest in 2005, featuring headshots of people the fuzz like to keep tabs on. This was said to have angered many in the anti-armsbiz activist community, who might not care to have their day-job employers or other people made aware that the plods class them as possible “domestic extremists”.
Now it has emerged, as one would really expect with any group of possible activists, that at least one of the individuals pictured may have been a spy for the weapons trade. The Grauniad – which now seems to have blanked out quite a lot of the faces on its rogues/heroes gallery, presumably at the request of those featured – says that Martin Hogbin was on the card.
Hogbin, at one time an official at Campaign Against Arms Trade, has been accused of supplying information to corporate security spooks in the pay of Britain’s number one arms firm, BAE Systems plc. He has always denied this, but no longer works for CAAT.
This article was posted: Wednesday, October 28, 2009 at 4:46 am