HN18

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This article is part of the Undercover Research Portal at Powerbase - investigating corporate and police spying on activists



Part of a series on
undercover police officers
'HN18'
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Alias: unknown
Deployment: 2004-2007
Unit:
Targets:
International Solidarity Movement (London branch), State of Emergency Collective, No Borders, Globalise Resistance, rampARTS.

HN18 is the cipher given to a former undercover officer with the Special Demonstration Squad, deployed in ' the 'last period of existence' of the unit into at least two group and reported on others.[1]. In December 2018, it was revealed their cover name was Robert "Rob" Harrison, deployed 2004-2007 into International Solidarity Movement (London branch), State of Emergency Collective, No Borders and Globalise Resistance.[2] He also appears to have targeted other groups such as the rampARTS squat in east London.[3]

  • For details of the N-numbers cipher system see the N officers page.

In the Undercover Policing Inquiry

  • 11 May 2018: Inquiry directed that anonymity applications for HN18 were to be filed by 31 May 2018 for both the MPS legal team and the Designated Lawyers team.[4]
  • 29 May 2019: MPS make application to restrict real name of HN18.[5]
  • 21 June 2018: announced that the Chair of the Inquiry, John Mitting was 'minded to' restrict the real name of HN4 but refuse the application over the cover name.[6] However, he gave HN18 an opportunity to provide notification by 26 June 2018 if they wished a closed hearing in respect of their application, with skeleton argument setting out objects to be provided by 29 June 2018.[7][8]

In his 'minded to' note, Mitting wrote:[1]

The risk to the safety of HN18 posed by members of the targeted groups is negligible and the risk of interference by them in family and private life is low. The deployments are of interest to the Inquiry, as is the evidence which HN18 can give about the management and closing down of the Special Demonstration Squad.
In the opinion of Prof Fox, who reported on the condition of HN18 on 12 March 2018, HN18 suffers from two moderately severe mental health conditions, which would be exacerbated by publication of the real or cover name. I accept that, if the real name were to be published, there is some risk of interference in the right of HN18 to respect for private and family life and of some impact on HN18's mental health. Publication of the real name is not necessary to permit the Inquiry to fulfil its terms of reference... However, for reasons which are explained in the closed note which accompanies these reasons, I am unconvinced that a restriction order in respect of the cover name of HN18 would have a material impact on mental health or well-being. Further, the giving of evidence about the deployments would be likely to lead members of targeted groups to identify HN18's cover name for themselves. A restriction order in respect of the cover name would, therefore, probably serve no useful purpose.
  • 30 July 2018: Mitting refuses to restrict cover name and remains minded to restrict real name.[9]
  • 13 September 2018: "The officer was permitted an opportunity to respond to the Chairman's Minded To decision to restrict real name but to refuse to restrict cover name but the Chairman maintained his view and in a final ruling refused to restrict cover name but remains minded to restrict real name. Open material will be published and an opportunity provided for responding."[10]
  • 11 December 2018: cover-name and target groups revealed by the Inquiry.[2]
  • 21 February 2019: Inquiry directs that submissions regarding the restriction order over the real name are to be made by 21 March 2019.[11]

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Sir John Mitting, Applications for restriction orders in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstration Squad - 'Minded To' Note 11, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 21 June 2018.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Email to core participants, '20181211-UCPI_to_all_CPs-publishing _HN18', Undercover Policing Inquiry, 11 December 2018, referencing update of the webpage UCPI.org.uk/cover-names.
  3. Asa Winstanley, Police spy infiltrated Palestine activists, The Electronic Intifada, 13 December 2018 (accessed 17 December 2018).
  4. Sir John Mitting, Applications for restriction orders in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstrations Squad: Directions, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 11 May 2018.
  5. Designated Lawyers, Open application for a restriction order (anonymity) re: HN18, Metropolitan Police Service, 29 May 2018 (released 21 February 2019 via UCPI.org.uk).
  6. Press notice - 'Minded to' decisions relating to anonymity applications: Special Demonstration Squad, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 21 June 2018.
  7. Sir John Mitting, Applications for restriction orders in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstration Squad - Directions following publication of 'Minded to' note 11, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 21 June 2018.
  8. Counsel to the Inqury's Explanatory Note to accompany the Chairman's 'Minded To' Note 9 and Ruling 8 in respect of applications for restrictions over the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and Special Demonstration Squad: Update as at 21 June 2018, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 21 June 2018.
  9. Sir John Mitting, Applications for restriction orders in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstration Squad: Minded to note 12 and Ruling 10, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 30 July 2018.
  10. Kate Wilkinson, Counsel to the Inquiry's Explanatory Note to accompany the Chairman's 'Minded-To' Note 12 in respect of applications for restrictions over the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstration Squad, Undercover Public Inquiry, 13 September 2018.
  11. Sir John Mitting, Directions for SDS HN18 HN66 HN122 HN299 342 and HN344, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 21 February 2019 (accessed 7 April 2019).