Marco Jacobs Undercover Timeline
Based first in Brighton and then Cardiff, the suspected NPOIU undercover officer known as ‘Marco Jacobs’ infiltrated a broad range of activist groups, campaigns and networks both in the UK and overseas from 2004 until 2009.
This timeline collates previously published (though sometimes as yet uncorroborated) claims and privately confirmed details of what ‘Jacobs’ did, and where and when he did it. Sources for each claim are clearly cited.
N.B. This is a preliminary timeline, published to provide some background for the hearing. While the current profile is based on published material only, we will now talk to people who knew Marco Jacobs. If you think you have anything to add or to correct, do get in touch (ask for our PGP key).
Undercover tour timeline for ‘Marco Jacobs’
- October/November(?) 2004: Attends meetings of local Dissent! group preparing for the G8 summit at Gleneagles in July 2005, and also said to be “involved in building for an action at Wiston House” - presumably the ‘N5’ action (see below). Goes out flyposting in Brighton with other activists to publicise the G8 mobilisation. Two others are arrested and have their homes raided.
- 5 November 2004: Believed present at ‘N5’ action which draws up to around eighty activists to disrupt a pre-G8 global economic meeting by the Foreign Office, the Wilton Park Conference, at Wiston House in Steyning, Sussex. There are seven reported arrests, with police noting that “Operation Farthing was undertaken from Thursday 4 November to Sunday 7 November as a response to intelligence that indicated the possible disruption of an event to be held at Wiston House”.
- Early 2005(?): Drives group of activists from Brighton to anti-Tesco protest camp in Shepton Mallet, Somerset.
- 6-8 July 2005: G8 summit at Gleneagles near Stirling in Scotland, which draws large counter-protests and massive police operation. Direct action against the event was planned and executed through the Dissent! network, the Brighton group of which ‘Jacobs’ was involved in, though it is unclear whether he travelled to Scotland for the protests.
- Summer 2005: Becomes involved in Cardiff Anarchist Network.
- 28-29 November 2005: Takes part in protest against Future of Unmanned Vehicles conference in London, having asked around about Smash EDO.
- 15-17 June 2006: G8 summit in St Petersburg, Russia; ‘Jacobs’ had been planning to attend, but pulled out at the last minute. As his former comrades in CAN speculated, “presumably unable to get agreement from the Russian government, or authorisation to act without their knowledge.”
- 14 February 2007: Involved in planning of blockade action at the South Hook LNG terminal under construction at Milford Haven in west Wales; several arrests are made and homes - including that of ‘Jacobs’ - are raided by police.
- 6-8 June 2007: Takes part in G8 summit protests at Heiligendamm in Germany (as does Mark Kennedy).
- After 8 June 2007: Begins sexual relationship with close activist friend ‘Sarah’ after they return from Heiligendamm, which lasts “a few weeks”.(Note that this conflicts with the account published by The Guardian in 2011, which indicated that the relationship took place in the Summer of 2008 and lasted three months.)
- 14-21 August 2007: Attends Climate Camp near Heathrow airport to the west of London.
- 19-24 September 2007: Participates in No Borders camp at Balcombe in West Sussex, with protests at locations in Gatwick, Crawley and Croydon.
- Summer 2008: Initiates three month-long sexual relationship with ‘Sarah’, an activist in Cardiff. (Note that in their book Evans and Lewis say that the relationship lasted “a few weeks” and took place in the Summer of 2007.)
- January 2009: Drives to Dissent! meeting in or near Strasbourg in France with fellow undercover officer Mark Kennedy in preparation for the anti-NATO protests planned for late March/early April.
- 14/15 February 2009: Attends international direct action conference in Strasbourg, France.
- 4 March 2009: Attends anti-NATO planning meeting in Strasbourg alongside Mark Kennedy.
- 29 March 2009: Travels to KTS convergence centre (Autonomes Zentrum) in Freiburg, Germany, in readiness for anti-NATO summit protests.
- 3/4 April 2009: NATO's sixtieth anniversary is marked with the Strasbourg-Kehl summit, straddling the Franco-German border.
- 4 May: Returns to Brighton to attend the Smash EDO Mayday event against the arms manufacturer EDO/ITT; the day is heavily policed.
- October 2009: Exfiltrates from Cardiff anarchist scene, claiming to go to Corfu.
Currently no specific details are known about the activities of ‘Jacobs’ in 2010.
- 15 January 2011: Publicly outed as undercover police officer ‘Officer B’ in The Guardian. Activists name him and publish his picture the same day.
- 19 January 2011: Work name and picture published in follow-up piece in The Guardian.
- Dick Tracy, ‘An account of Marco Jacobs' time in Brighton’, IndyMedia UK, 19 January 2011 (accessed 11 May 2014).
- Rob Evans & Paul Lewis, Undercover: The True Story of Britain's Secret Police, Faber & Faber, 2013, p226.
- Though the initial Guardian report naming him by his false identity claimed that he “was first noticed in activists' gatherings in Brighton in March 2005” - see Rajeev Syal, ‘Undercover police: Officer B identified as Mark Jacobs’, The Guardian, 19 January 2011 (accessed 11 May 2014).
- unknown author, ‘Protest and Action to disrupt international meeting of Capitalists’, Dissent! Network archive, 13 November 2004 (accessed 17 June 2014).
- unknown author, ‘Revolting Worthing - ten years of action and protest’, The Pork-Bolter website, October 2007 (accessed 17 June 2014).
- anti-g8, ‘Anarchists plotting to disrupt top summit’, Westcountry IMC, 29 October 2004 (accessed 17 June 2014).
- unknown author, ‘Seven arrests at anti-capitalist protest’, West Sussex County Times, 15 November 2004 (accessed 17 June 2014).
- Rob Evans & Paul Lewis, Undercover: The True Story of Britain's Secret Police, Faber & Faber, 2013, p227.
- Tom Anderson, ‘Infiltrated, Intimidated and Undermined: How Police Infiltration Can Mute Political Dissent - An Interview with Verity Smith, from Cardiff Anarchist Network’ in Rebecca Fisher (ed.), Managing Democracy Managing Dissent, Corporate Watch, 2013 (accessed 17 June 2014), p276.
- Cardiff Anarchist Network, ‘Statement from Cardiff Anarchist Network (CAN) on the infiltration by Mark 'Marco' Jacobs’, IndyMedia UK, 19 January 2011 (accessed 11 May 2014).
- unknown author, ‘13 arrested as work on LNG terminal is halted’, Western Mail, 15 February 2007 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- Rob Evans & Paul Lewis, Undercover: The True Story of Britain's Secret Police, Faber & Faber, 2013, p232.
- Andrej Hunko, ‘Information on sexual relationships by British undercover investigators in Germany/information for the individuals affected’, written evidence to Home Affairs Committee, Parliament.uk, February 2013 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- Veit Medick, Sven Röbel & Marcel Rosenbach, ‘Maulwürfe im Milieu’, Der Spiegel, 23 May 2011 (accessed 18 August 2014): the article notes that “At Heiligendamm [G8 summit in June 2007] about ten foreign police officers were deployed besides Kennedy, including a Welsh colleague with the alias ‘Marco Jacobs’, a supposed truck driver from Cardiff who attracted attention at the Baltic Sea activist camp with his drinking ability. In return, German authorities also sent their undercover officers around the world. The Berlin State Criminal Police Office alone sent five officers to the 2005 G8 protests in Gleneagles, each of whom was accompanied by a liaison officer, who served as a contact person to receive reports from the moles in the movement.” (Translation: BristleKRS)
- @rchie, ‘Hey stroppygit and folk from brighton.’, IndyMedia UK, 20 January 2011 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- Rob Evans & Paul Lewis, Undercover: The True Story of Britain's Secret Police, Faber & Faber, 2013, pp331-332.
- Paul Lewis, Matthew Taylor & Rajeev Syal, ‘Third undercover police spy unmasked as scale of network emerges’, The Guardian, 15 January 2011 (accessed 11 May 2014).
- Stroppyoldgit, ‘@ @rchie’, IndyMedia UK, 3 February 2011 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- someone from paris, ‘please forward evidence..’, IndyMedia UK, 15 January 2011 (accessed 19 August 2014).
- acrosthechannel, ‘Mark and Marcos were at a dissent meeting in Strasbourg in January 2009’, IndyMedia UK, 17 January 2011 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- alsoacrossthechannel, ‘marco was at 2 meetings in strasbourg’, IndyMedia UK, 18 January 2011 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- Tilly Gifford, David, Melissa Jones, Gemma Larsen & Eveline, ‘Mark Kennedy: A chronology of his activities’, Powerbase website, last amended 18 February 2013 (accessed 22 May 2014).
- Nachtermittlungen, ‘Schweine in zivii’, IndyMedia UK, 15 January 2011 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- Josh Jones, ‘'Mayday! Mayday!' Smash EDO Brighton: anti-war march clashes with police’, Indymedia UK, 4 May 2009 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- AranSPEAKS, ‘Smash EDO Mayday! Mayday! Street Party Protest 2009’, YouTube, filmed 4 May 2009 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- blinkimages, ‘Smash EDO May Day 2009 Protest March’, YouTube, filmed 4 May 2009 (accessed 18 August 2014).
- Fitwatch, ‘Officer 'B' revealed as Cardiff based 'Marco' Jacobs’, IndyMedia UK, 15 January 2011 (accessed 11 May 2014).
- Rajeev Syal, ‘Undercover police: Officer B identified as Mark Jacobs’, The Guardian, 19 January 2011 (accessed 11 May 2014).