N officers

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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 the
Undercover
Policing Inquiry
N Officers list
Description: A list of N & HN cyphers used to designate individual officers in the Inquiry and by Operation Herne

Police officers cited in the Undercover Policing Inquiry (UCPI) are generally designated by a cypher / nominal starting with N or HN followed by a number. The practice of assigning these cyphers was begun in by the Metropolitan Police inquiry Operation Herne which investigated the activities of the Special Demonstration Squad undercovers. It was subsequently adopted by Mark Ellison for his Review and the UCPI, both of which draw heavily on the material assembled by Operation Herne. The practice was also taken up by Operation Elter, investigating the National Public Order Intelligence Unit. The system appears to have changed in 2017, when the 3 August 2017 rulings and direction of the new Inquiry Chair, John Mitting, began using the 'HN' label, though the associated numbers appear to be unchanged.[1]

The N number system appears to be applied across the board for police officers regardless of force, position or involvement with undercover policing. A few have since been identified, but many remain anonymous and as such few details of them are know. Except where profiled elsewhere, this page collates what is known of them and links to relevant documents, including relevant procedural issues within the Undercover Policing Inquiry.

Due to the number of offices and associated details, they list has been split over several pages. This is page 1, and as well as background material covers N officers with cypher number between 1 and 199. For officers with number 200 and higher see N Officers (page 2).

Updated 24 October 2017

N series officers

Not all officers have publicly assigned N numbers, for instance those of Mike Chitty, Colin Black and Robert Potter are as yet unknown.

Cypher Name Status Notes
HN2 unknown UCPI needs more details before making decision on restricting the cover and real name; also awaiting NH2 to appoint a legal representative.[1][2]
SDS UCO. Application from MPS over restriction on publishing real name only; officer not in position to confirm whether wider restriction is to be sought over the cover name, and open version of material relating to HN2 has yet to be agreed.[3]
Mentioned in Herne 1 as a former SDS undercover and later a cover officer, now retired:[4]
  • 3.4: "According to N2 efforts would be made to research the existence of close family members. Names that were too unusual or too common would be discounted, as too would cases where the deceased had died in unusual or memorable circumstances. In preference, children were chosen that would have died between four (4) and eight (8) years of age and would be of broadly the same age as the UCO."
  • 4.4: "... he found himself in a situation where he had penetrated an organisation and was then asked by the group to help trace a mole among them."
N5 John Dines Confirmed.[5] SDS UCO
HN7 unknown Subject to restriction order on real and cover name.[1] SDS UCO. Deployed in late 1980s and early 1990s to three groups. Unconnected with his undercover deployment he sustained a significant head injury while a police officer. This injury and an unrelated condition have caused significant mental and personal problems, subject to a report by Prof. George Fox - who concludes there is a 'significant' ('highly likely to occur') risk of suicide if HN7's real or cover name were published.[6]


Separate ruling without hearing granted HN7 anonymity, based on medical evidence.[1] "[Mitting] has therefore made a final determination based on medical evidence which cannot be properly disputed."[3] Mitting in his ruling on anonymity states the risk to suicide is one he is not prepared to take, and even if that risk were not to materialise, notes "the mental distress which would be occasioned to him would amount to a significant interference in with his right to respect for his private life" under Article 8 human rights and "The need to arrive at that truth in relation to his deployment is unlikely to provide that justification. There is likely to be a good deal of other open evidence of similar and contemporaneous deployments from which conclusions can be drawn".[6] See also Open application for restriction order for HN7.

N9 unknown An SDS officer mentioned by N81 in his interview: "N9 later told me that it was quite usual for SDS management to arrange meetings between operatives and outside persons at the management’s homes. This was because such persons would not be able to attend SDS safe houses." (Ellison, p. 232).[7]
N10 Bob Lambert Confirmed.[8] SDS UCO & manager. Role in meeting between Richard Walton and N81 discussed in Herne II[9] and the Ellison Review.[10]

In March 2016 a restriction order application and supporting documents were filed on his behalf seeking some restriction on personal details being released by the Inquiry: Open Application, Personal Statement (open version), Draft Order. In October 2016, Pitchford issued a 'Minded-To' indicating he was willing to grant most of the order sought. Objections were to be received by 3 November 2016, but no final order is readily found on the Inquiry website.
Represented by Slater & Gordon.

N14 Jim Boyling Confirmed.[8] SDS UCO. In March 2016 a restriction order application and supporting documents were filed on his behalf seeking some restriction on personal details being released by the Inquiry: Open Application, Draft Order. In October 2017, Pitchford issued a 'Minded-To note indicating he would grant the order. Objections were to be received by 3 November 2016, but no final order is readily found on the Inquiry website. Mentioned in passing in Herne 1 (para. 2.1).[4]
Represented by Slater & Gordon.
HN15 unknown UCPI needs more details before making decision on restricting details.[1][2] SDS UCO. Mentioned by Lambert as an SDS UCO who 'would have involvement in Stephen Lawrence campaign issues' (Ellison page 214).[10]

No application from MPS, but in March 2016 NH15's lawyer had submitted an application to restrict real and cover names. The lawyers have since notified the Inquiry that a supplement to the application may be made on receipt of a final risk assessment from the MPS. The Inquiry has also received additional evidence, but is awaiting the further application before publishing anything.[3] March 2016 application documents: personal statement (gisted), open application, draft order and risk assessment (gisted).
Represented by Slater & Gordon.

HN16 unknown Minded to: restrict real name, release cover name (Oct 2017).[11] SDS UCO

The legal representative for HN16 (S&G) had applied to restrict cover and real name. In the August 2017 UCPI press released it was said Mitting was considering a closed hearing for HN16 'due to sensitivity of material being considered'[1] His then Minded-To also stated: "Detailed factors particular to this officer's circumstances require them to be considered at a closed hearing."[2] This closed hearing was take place after a further risk assessment, to be submitted by 1 September 2017.

The Inquiry is awaiting the final risk assessment from MPS before open versions of all docs will be published, though some documents were previously published in March 2016.[3]

Following a closed hearing,[11] Mitting issued a Supplementary Minded-To on 23 October 2017 in which he stated:[12]

Publication of the cover name of HN16 is necessary to afford an opportunity to any individual who may have had an intimate relationship with HN16 under the cover name to provide information and evidence about it to the Inquiry. [emphasis added] This involves a small risk of significant interference with the right to respect for private and family life of HN16, if it leads to the revelation of the real name of HN16. Nevertheless, it is necessary to permit the Inquiry to fulfil its terms of reference to take that risk and proportionate to do so. On the basis of the information presently known to the Inquiry, and if no plausible evidence of such a relationship is forthcoming, publication of the real name of HN16 would neither be necessary for that purpose, nor proportionate, nor otherwise justified.

The accompanying press release noted also:[11]

The undercover police deployments of all three of these individuals [HN16, HN26, HN81] are of real interest to the Inquiry and the Chairman is of the view that there is no means of getting to the truth without the cover names being made public.

Unreleased by the Inquiry was a closed note from Mitting 'which sets out in detail the reasons for refusing the application for a restriction order in respect of the cover name.'[12]

March 2016 application material: personal statement (gisted), open application, draft order and risk assessment (gisted)

Represented by Slater & Gordon.

N17 unknown SDS UCO. Mentioned by Lambert as a contemporary of Peter Francis (early/mid 1990s) who infiltrated far right groups (Ellison, p. 214).[10]
N24 unknown SDS Management. N81 stated to Op. Herne: 'I was informed, at the height of the Macpherson Inquiry, that my reporting was going straight to Sir Paul Condon’s desk each morning via N24, and N127 (SDS Sgt) passed on to me from N24 congratulations from the Commissioner for your excellent reporting...' (Ellison, p. 232).[10]
HN26 unknown Minded-To: restrict real name, release cover name (Oct 2017).[11] SDS UCO (early/mid 1990s).

They were a Special Branch officer prior to being recruited to SDS and 'promised lifelong anonymity along with personal safety assurances'.[13] According to the 1994/1995 SDS annual review, cited by Herne I, N26 was the first officer to obtain a completely fictitious identity with the practice of using identities of deceased children being phased out starting November 1994 (5.4).[4]

An application for full anonymity for HN26 had been made in March 2016:[3] In August 2017, the Metrpolitian Police applied to restrict HN26's reall name only [14] while HN26's solicitors (S&G) applied for both cover and real names to be subject of a restriction order.[15] HN26 has not cooperated with the risk assessment, refusing to meet the risk assessor and providing information only through his lawyer.[13]

A closed session for on HN26's restriction order applications was to be held 'due to sensitivity of material being considered'[1] / 'detailed factors particular to this officer's circumstances'[2] and Mitting directed that NH26 should be present or at least contactable throughout the hearing.[16].

This closed hearing took place following which Mitting stated he was minded to release the cover name and restrict HN26's real name,[11] stating in his Minded To (Oct 2013):[12]

It is necessary to permit the Inquiry’s terms of reference to be fulfilled that HN26’s cover name be published. The activities in which HN26 participated during deployment are matters of legitimate public concern. Others, not belonging to the Special Demonstration Squad, could, if alerted to the cover name of HN26 give evidence of potential value about them and about HN26’s participation in them. Unless the cover name is published, there is a real risk that the Inquiry would be deprived of such evidence. No practicable means exists of obtaining such evidence from them unless the cover name of HN26 is published by the Inquiry. The Article 8(2) European Convention rights of HN26 are engaged, but the public interest identified above justifies the interference with them identified in the closed reasons which accompany this note.
Publication of the real name of HN26 by the Inquiry is not necessary to permit the terms of reference of the Inquiry to be fulfilled. Given that it is not necessary, it would be disproportionate to do so.

An unpublised closed note was stated to provide more detailed reasons.[12]

The accompanying press release noted also:[11]

The undercover police deployments of all three of these individuals [HN16, HN26, HN81] are of real interest to the Inquiry and the Chairman is of the view that there is no means of getting to the truth without the cover names being made public.

March 2016 material: open application, S&G application, personal statement (gisted), draft order, and risk assessment (gisted).

August 2017 material: MPS have applied to MPS application to restrict real name (MPS), application to restrict both cover and real names (S&G), expert medical evidence (Dr Walter Busuttil, fully redacted), personal statement (fully redacted) & risk assessment (Graham Walker, mostly redacted).

Represented by Slater & Gordon.

N27 unknown SDS Undercover. Ellison cites Lambert's interview with Operation Herne as saying: "N27 (also deployed into a different left-wing group) and would have come across Peter Francis, certainly both were at Welling…" (Ellison, p. 214).[10]
N40 unknown Likely SDS officer. Mentioned in relation to how information from the SDS, particularly on the identities of protestors, was passed on to the rest of the police (Herne II, 13.4, 24.1.3).[9]
N43 Peter Francis Confirmed. Mentioned in Herne I (3.5, 3.6) though not by real name; his identity can be inferred as he was the only former undercover who provided a video interview to the Guardian.[4]
N52 unknown SDS sergeant, who in 1998 received the memo from Bob Lambert on the meeting between Richard Walton and N81 (Ellison Review, p. 229).[10]
N53 unknown SDS Management. Authored a series of internal memos in 2002 in relation to a joint operation with the National Criminal Intelligence Service known as Op. Wisdom - in relation to the use of the 'Jackal run' process of using a deceased person's identity to obtain passports. "N53 explained that he believed that between 1968 and 2002 there had been one hundred and two (102) SDS officers who had been provided with covert identities. N53’s documentation stated that the majority of these UCO’s would have used a deceased child’s identity." (Herne I, 5.4 & 6.2).[4] Mentioned as an ex-SDS Detective Inspector in relation to material being passed onto other units: Another ex-Detective Inspector, N53, told Herne: “The SDS retained nothing that would betray its identity” (Ellison, p. 201).[10] Briefly mentioned in relation to computerisation of SDS / Special Branch records circa 1998 (Herne II, 13.1).[9]
HN58 unknown Minded-To: cover name known but UCPI minded to restrict it and real name (Aug 2017).[1] Position changed to considering publishing both cover and real name by separating the two; further submissions invited (Oct 2017).[11] SDS UCO & manager. 'HN58 is now aged over 60. From 1997 to 2001, HN58 had a managerial position in the Special Demonstration Squad, having earlier being deployed as as an undercover officer.'[2]

In August 2017 open applications from the MPS & HN58's lawyer to restrict cover and real names were published and accompanied by a personal statement, expert medical report & additional threat assessments.[3] Mitting in his 'Minded-To' indicated he would accept both applications, stating (Aug 2017, para. 4):[2]

The publication of any details about the deployment would give rise to some risk to HN58's personal safety. Further, in a report dated 18 January 2017 Professor Fox states that the publication of the cover name creates a slight risk of causing a stress reaction recognised in the 10th revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems. It is is not necessary to fulfil the Inquiry's terms of reference to run these risks. What matters is the evidence which HN58 can given about the discharge of HN58's managerial duties and evidence which can be given by others about it. The identity of HN58 is know to those who can do so. The cogency of HN58's evidence and theirs will not be diminished by the use of a cypher. It is likely that HN58 will have to give evidence from behind a screen. Closed reasons supplement this paragraph."

In October 2017, Mitting noted submissions from other non-police core participants and wrote:

The principal reason supporting the decision which I was minded to make to restrict publication of both real and cover names was concern for the safety of HN58, arising out of the deployment of HN58 as an undercover officer. It is possible that this concern could be met if evidence about the discharge of managerial duties by HN58 was given in the real name and evidence about HN58’s activities as an undercover officer was given entirely in closed session. Not much of public value would be lost thereby.
I invite submissions from all concerned with this issue, including HN58 on this alternative course. A short closed hearing may be required after open submissions have been made.

March 2016 application: open application, draft order, personal statement (gisted) & risk assessment (gisted).

August 2017 application: open application for restriction order, open supplementary application for restriction order, open risk assessment (David Reid), medical statement (Prof. G. C. Fox; fully redacted)

Core participant in the Inquiry, represented by Slater & Gordon.


Though his names are not known, HN58 appears under his cypher in a number of related documents.

MPS risk assessment:[17]

On recruitment as UCO: "There was a lot of secrecy about the SDS and N58 states that people didn't talk unnecessarily. N58 had no idea of the existence of the SDS when N58 first went to Special Branch. N58 gradually became aware because people N58 knew 'disappeared' for a number of years before returning." On being recruited into the SDS he received a home visit where he was assured of lifetime anonymity. He used the identify of a dead child. He also attended twice weekly meetings with his supervisors while undercover.

Ellison Review: Head of SDS in August 1998 as Detective Chief Inspector, when he received Lambert's report on the meeting between N81 and Richard Walton. In response he commented: "An excellent meeting and a good example of the strides N81 has made over the last 12 months" (Ellison, page 229). Author of an SDS Intelligence Update in September 1998, titled 'Extremist involvement in the Stephen Lawrence Campaign' where he wrote: "N81’s unique insight into the behind-the-scenes machinations of the Lawrence campaign has also proved invaluable to A/DI Walton who is currently attached to the Stephen Lawrence review team" (Ellison, page 229).[10]

PCC Investigation: HN58 was one of those investigated for gross misconduct by the IPCC following formal referral by the MPS in the wake of the 2014 Ellison Review's criticism of the meeting between Richard Walton and N81. In this investigation HN58 was given the cipher N34 and it was noted he was "responsible for the management of officers deployed within Special Branch, including officers deployed within the Special Demonstration Squad (SDS) who worked undercover" (para.148). The report state HN58 was promoted to Detective Chief Inspector rank in 1997 and transfered to SDS in mid-1998, with Det. Insp. Bob Lambert working under him (para. 152, 194). In this, he answered to Detective Superintendent 'N35', who oversaw 'S Squad' which included the SDS (para. 190). He retired in 2001 (para. 152). HN58 was aware of the meeting between Walton and N81, though did not consider it inappropriate at the time (para. 158, 194).[18]

During the IPCC investigation HN58 was interviewed but declined to answer questions, though later provided a written statement (para. 151). The IPCC subsequently said there was not enough documentary or witness evidence (para. 217) to proceed with misconduct hearings against HN58 so on balance of probabilities there was no case to answer in respect of authorising the meeting between Lambert and N81, though there was retrospective knowledge of it. However, the author of the report did state: "With such a close working relationship between Robert Lambert and N34 , it is inconceivable that Robert Lambert would have been able to make the arrangements for this meeting to take place without some knowledge on the part of N34" (para. 214). The author also noted that the meeting was initiated within the SDS itself, which leaves HN35, and his two superiors N34 and Colin Black in the frame (para. 219, 220).[18]

N67 unknown SDS UCO (1981-1984). Used dead child identity; said at time of deployment there was no training manual but there was a 'best practice' reference folder (Herne I, 7.4 & 7.5).[4]
HN68 unknown Minded-To: real name cannot be published.[2] SDS UCO & managerial; deceased. Deployed against groups from 1968 to 1974. Managerial position in SDS 1982-84.[2]

Cover name to be published, however Mitting states: "As in the case of the living officers cited it is unlikely that the publication of his real name would prompt the giving or production of evidence necessary to permit the Inquiry to fulfil its terms of reference. Evidence about the discharge of his managerial duties can be given by reference to his cypher. The identity of HN68 is known to those who can give such evidence. Publication of his real name would be likely to interfere with the right of his widow to respect for her private life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (‘the European Convention’). It is unlikely that such interference would be justified under Article 8(2). The possibility that disclosure of his cover name might interfere with her right is nil or negligible. Closed reasons accompany this note."[2]

The MPS have submitted an application to restrict N68's real name, a witness statement from his widow and an open risk assessment (Mark Veljovic). The above information on N68 comes from Mitting's 'Minded-To' note, and does not appear in the risk assessment.

As he deceased, HN68 is not a core participant.

N69 unknown SDS Chief Inspector (1986-1987). In his statement to Op. Herne stated '…new recruits were instructed on how to go about obtaining false birth certificates. They would obtain details of a deceased person of a similar age from Somerset House and then use those details to go about creating their legend.' (Herne I, 3.1)[4]
N72 unknown SDS. Provided evidence that N81's tasking to spy on the Lawrence family came from Commissioner Stevens (Ellison, p. 253; Herne II, 21.1.15 & 21.2).[9] Operation Herne told Ellison that N72 did not serve with SDS until after the Macpherson Inquiry so his account should be treated as hearsay; Stevens also denied this (Ellison, p. 253).[10]
N78 unknown SDS UCO. Joined Special Branch in 1986 and SDS in 1991. Deployed as an undercover into left wing groups Summer 1991 to 1995, including some near the Lawrence campaign; had left the SDS by 1996 (Herne II, 12.2; Ellison, 6.4). Aware of Peter Francis' role; said he heard nothing indicating material to smear the Lawrences was being sought (Herne II, 21.1.14; Ellison, 6.3(p), 6.4). Considerable material from him covered in section 6.4 of the Ellison Review (Vol.1).[9]
HN81 / N81 unknown Minded-To: Real name cannot be published, cover name can be.[11] SDS UCO. Referred to extensively in the Ellison Review in relation to the targeting of the family of Stephen Lawrence.

On joining the SDS he received a home visit from two officers who affirmed he would have anonymity for the rest of their career. During his time undercover he would have twice weekly meetings with his handlers, and following the end of his deployment he returned to Special Branch.[19]

In March 2016 N81's lawyers submitted applications for restriction orders of N81's real and cover names. Revised application and supporting material from the lawyers and MPS was released by the Inquiry in August 2017.[3]

In August 2017 Mitting proposed to hold a closed session hearing over cover name to be held 'due to sensitivity of material being considered' - directions to be given separately.[1] As such he issued a direction that there should be a closed hearing to
(a) evaluate the risk to N81 and their partner,
(b) how they can be protected from that risk if the cover name is disclosed and
(c) if the risk cannot be taken how the issues can be fully investigated by the Inquiry.

It was desired that N81 attends the hearing, but it was not ordered. Some additional bits of notification were to be provided to the Inquiry no later than 17 August 2017.[16]

Mitting stated at the time:[2]

One of the reasons for setting up the Inquiry was to investigate these issues. I can at present see no means of resolving disputed questions of fact about them without the cover name of HN81 being published. One of the issues which I may have to determine is whether or not the group against which HN81 was deployed was steered towards the Lawrence family campaign by HN81. For others to be able to give evidence about that issue, they would have to know the cover name. HN81 is understandably concerned that revelation of the cover name may lead to identification of the real name. This has had, and continues to have, an impact on HN81’s mental health. According to Dr Walter Busuttil, a consultant psychiatrist, in a report dated 15 February 2017, the impact has been significant and will be severe if the cover name is disclosed. HN81’s situation has also had an impact on the health and well-being of HN81’s partner. Their right to respect for their private and family life, including health and personal integrity, under Article 8 of the European Convention will be infringed unless the interference is justified under Article 8(2). The issue is both important and difficult. I propose, therefore, to take the exceptional course of conducting a closed hearing at which I can receive representations by or on behalf of HN81 and discuss possible means of reconciling HN81’s legitimate interests with those of the Inquiry. If necessary, I will thereafter invite representations from non-state core participants, if necessary at an open hearing. Closed reasons supplement this paragraph.

In his October 2017 Supplementary 'Minded-To', Mitting wrote:[12]

Following the closed hearing on 10 October 2017 I am minded to make a restriction order under section 19(3) of the Inquiries Act 2005 in respect of the real name of HN81 and to refuse the application in respect of the cover name.
The Inquiry cannot fulfil its terms of reference on a critical issue – the alleged infiltration of the Lawrence family campaign and the intelligence gathered and reported upon it by undercover police officers, in particular HN81 – unless the cover name is published. It is essential that members of the group against which HN81 was deployed and others in the Lawrence family campaign should be able to give evidence about HN81’s actions. They cannot sensibly be expected to do so unless they know who HN81 was in the name by which HN81 was known to them. It is likely that this decision will have an adverse impact on HN81’s mental health and so interfere with the right to respect for the family and private life of HN81 and HN81’s partner. I am satisfied that the interference is justified under Article 8(2) of the European Convention on Human Rights (‘the European Convention’) because of the compelling public interest in getting to the truth about HN81’s deployment. Publication of the real name of HN81 by the Inquiry is not necessary to permit the terms of reference of the Inquiry to be fulfilled. Given that it is not necessary, it would be disproportionate to do so.

The accompanying press release noted also:[11]

The undercover police deployments of all three of these individuals [HN16, HN26, HN81] are of real interest to the Inquiry and the Chairman is of the view that there is no means of getting to the truth without the cover names being made public.

Unpublished close reasons were also issued setting reasons out in greater detail for this proposed decision. Mitting also stated:[12]

If the decision proposed is made, neither the cover name of HN81 nor the name of the group against which HN81 was deployed will be published immediately, to permit steps to be taken to mitigate the impact on HN81’s mental health.

March 2016 application documents: open application & S&G application, draft order, personal statement (gisted) & risk assessment (gisted)

August 2017 documents: open application for restriction order (MPS), open supplementary application for restriction order (S&G), open risk assessment (David Reid), open medical assessment

N81 is a core participant and is represented by Slater & Gordon.

N85 Roger Pearce Confirmed.[20] SDS UCO & manager. Head of Special Branch and Director of Intelligence for Metropolitan Police Service. See under profile for mentions of him in Herne I and the Ellison Review.
N86 unknown SDS Head from 1993 to 1996, as Detective Chief Inspector; responsiblities included SDS recruitment & tasking. Author of a dcocument of 24 Sept 1993 referring to a 'new, violent anti-fascist group forming within Youth Against Racism'. Also authored the 1993/1994 SDS Annual Report which discussed left-wing campaigning around the death of Stephen Lawrence.
Left SDS for another post on 11 April 1996. On 21 April 1997 he took temporary control for six months of S Squad (the division which contained the SDS) due to illness of its Suptintendent.
Refused to provide a statement to Operation Herne. However, as he is central to the claims of Peter Francis regarding racism in the SDS and the tasking against the Lawrence family, N86 provided a statement for the Ellison Review in which he denied much of what Francis said. (Ellison 6.5 & 6.9(c)-(d); Herne II, 26.1.19)[10][4]
N89 unknown SDS UCO; infiltrated far right in 1990s and 'involved in public order situations where left and right attended'; contemporary of Peter Francis who would confide in N89.
HN101 unknown SDS. Contemporary of Peter Francis, who had 'a involvement in Stephen Lawrence campaign issues' according to Lambert (Ellison, p. 214).[10]
HN104 Carlo Neri (alias) UCPI minded to restrict real name.[1][2] SDS UCO. Deployed against two groups March 2000 to Summer 2006. Both he and partners concerned about violence being used by (ex)members of the groups he targeted and of media intrusion, and the efforts of those with IT skills to ascertain his real name and whereabouts. "These concerns are not irrational and have some basis in fact". According to Prof Fox, (report of 8 March 2017), HN104 suffers from significant mental health conditions. Mitting opposing publishing of real name as interference under Article 8(2), and not necessary for those who claim sexual relationships with him in order to give evidence in acts committed by his cover name. "On the basis of what is known, interference in Article 8(2) rights ais not justified." Can give evidence from behind a screen.[2] Applications from MPS & N104's lawyer to restrict publication of real name only; also received are personal statements from his family and expert medical report; final risk assessment from MPS awaited but no scope for restriction of cover name. Open versions published.[3]

In the responding submissions made by the Non-Police/State Core Participants, it was noted that Carlo's real name was known to those he had spied upon.[21]

August 2017 documents: open application for restriction order (MPS), open application for restriction order (S&G), Open supplementary application for restriction order (S&G), open medical assessment, open personal statement (1), open personal statement (2), open statement by HN104's partner, open statement by HN104's relative

HN108 unknown real name to be published in due course.[1] No application made.[2] SDS back office / manager
HN109 unknown SDS Detective Inspector in 1995. Interview by Operation Herne quoted in Ellison Review: "There was never any reference made to ‘smearing’ in relation to the Lawrence family. Deployments into the support campaigns surrounding Stephen Lawrence were specifically to build a picture of the public order background… Any meeting I was involved in was never about any family member. It was done to protect the family" (Ellison, p.211).[10]
N118 Simon Wellings (alias) Confirmed.[22] SDS UCO
HN120 unknown real name to be published in due course.[1] No application made.[2] SDS back office / manager
HN123 unknown Minded-to: restrict both cover name and real name.[1][2] SDS UCO. Deployed into number of left-wing groups 1993-1998. Retired from MPS on health grounds & later diagnosed from mental health condition in part derived from his deployment - in slow but incomplete recovery. "HN123 and HN123’s partner are concerned about the possibility that HN123’s identity will be revealed during the Inquiry, both for reasons of safety and because of the potential impact on HN123’s health. I have read personal statements by both of them, which are and will remain closed, in which these concerns are expressed. I accept that they are genuine and not irrational. Overriding them would interfere with their right to respect for private and family life under Article 8 of the European Convention and would require to be justified under Article 8(2). Fulfilment of the terms of reference of the Inquiry does not require that the real or cover name of HN123 be published. The evidence of HN123 can be given under a cypher. HN123 was involved indirectly in deployments affecting the Lawrence family and can give evidence about that under the cypher. To the extent that it is contentious, it can be challenged just as effectively, as if given in the real or cover name. In those circumstances, the interference would not be justified. It is desirable, and may be essential, that HN123 gives evidence in public. In that event, protective measures are likely to be required."[2] Application from MPS & HN123's lawyer to restrict both cover and real names, along with personal statements & medical material - open versions published, some material previously being released in March 2016.[3]

March 2016 application documents: open application, draft order, personal statement (gisted) & risk assessment (gisted).

August 2017 documents: open application for restriction order (MPS), open application for restriction order (S&G)

The Ellison review stated (p.211): N123... spoke on the telephone to Operation Herne in November 2013: "Francis was lying about the smearing of Lawrence…" N123 had taken over from Mr Francis when in the back office. Mr Francis had told him that it was their role to provide "gossip for the field…" N123 had spent nine months in the back office and amongst management and had gone to field meetings. Not once did N123 see or hear any instruction to 'smear' the Lawrences. He did not see any paperwork to reflect this either.

According to Bob Lambert (Ellison, p.214), N123 started his undercover work after Lambert had become head of the SDS and stated: I am sure from day one the Stephen Lawrence case would have been on N123’s agenda, and… they must have attended, started to attend meetings with the Stephen Lawrence campaign, almost goes as read that they would have been there… they would want to be inside the meeting, to have a speaker on the platform and so N123 is following close behind ‘Pete Francis’… they became quite close friends and times would have been at the same events… May well have been events specifically in support of the Stephen Lawrence campaign…

Mentioned in Herne II has being undercover with the potential to report on the Lawrence family (Herne II, 12.2).[9]


Represented by Slater & Gordon.

N127 unknown Sergeant with SDS 1997-2001. Provides statement where he states he does not recognise Peter Francis's statements regarding spying on the Lawrence family; also received Lambert's memo on the N81 / Walton meeting (Ellison, p.229). N81 told Ellison: …I was informed, at the height of the Macpherson inquiry, that my reporting was going straight to Sir Paul Condon’s desk each morning via N24, and N127 (SDS Sgt) passed on to me from N24 congratulations from the Commissioner for your excellent reporting…' (Ellison 212, 229 & 232).[10]
N129 unknown SDS Detective Sergeant. received Lamberts memo on the N81 / Walton meeting; commented on character and skill of Peter Francis, but also that they did not recognise the allegations regarding seeking information to smear the Lawrence family. His statement to Op. Herne is quoted in Ellison (p.212): "[Mr Francis] was targeted towards the campaign in the same way as today… to perform a dual role of protecting the family from malicious extremist influences and providing information about potential public order issues. The anti-police sentiment on the streets was palpable, and Territorial Policing was very interested in any potential or planned disorder…" N129 believes that he was directly tasked to get involved with the campaign, although not necessarily with the family. His role was not about ‘smearing’ at all.[10]
HN146 unknown Real name to be published in due course.[1] No application made.[2] SDS back office / manager
N183 Richard Walton Special Branch background. Later head of Counter Terrorism Command.
N190 unknown SDS Detective Inspector; commented on retention / destruction of documents within the SDS during a 2004 document rationalisation process (Ellison, 201).[10]

For officers with number 200 or higher see N Officers (page 2).

Restriction order tranches

On 18th May 2017, the then Chair of the Undercover Policing Inquiry, Christopher Pitchford, ordered that restriction orders should be submitted for three separate tranches of officers. These were:[23]

  • By 1st June 2017: HN7, HN16, HN108, HN120, HN294, HN321, HN323, HN326, HN327, HN329, HN330, HN333, HN325 & HN343.
  • By 1 July 2017: HN2, HN15, HN26, HN58, HN68, HN81, HN104, HN123, HN146, HN204, HN297, HN328, HN335 & HN1251.
  • By 1 August 2017: N1, N23, N40, N45, N78, N86, N127, N216, N241, N298, N318, N322, N331, N334, N336, N344, N347 & N348.

Matters relating to the following officers were addressed in the August 2013 material issued by the Inquiry:

  • HN2, HN17, HN15, HN16, HN26, HN58, HN68, HN81, HN104, HN108, HN120, HN123, HN146, HN204, HN294, HN297, HN321, HN326, HN327, HN328, HN329, HN330, HN333, HN325, HN335, HN343, HN345, HN1251


On 23 October 2017, the new Chair, John Mitting, directed that applications for restriction orders should be submitted for the following officers no later than 31 October:[24]

  • HN2, HN17, HN34, HN56, HN64, HN88, HN99, HN127, HN244, HN301, HN331, HN332, HN341, HN344, HN345, HN353, HN356, HN1668, & HN2152:

N35 (IPCC classification)

Det. Supt. N35 headed 'S Squad', which included the SDS, in 1998. His cipher is assigned by the IPCC and stands outside of the Operation Herne scheme given above.

He is mentioned briefly in the Ellison Review briefly as 'Detective Superintendent S' (page 230), noting him as a recpient a note from Colin Black, Commander of Operations for Special Branch praising the SDS and noting he is aware of the meeting between N81 and Richard Walton.[7]

He receives more mention in the Independent Police Complaints Commission investigation of the Walton-N81 meeting, as the IPCC identifies him being as in the Special Branch chain of command who would have overseen and had knowledge of the meeting (para. 61). As such he the IPCC investigate him and others in 2015 for gross misconduct, following a referral by the Metropolitan Police Service. The subsequent IPCC report found there was insufficient evidence to proceed, but provided further details on him.[18]

The IPCC report also gave a precis of N35's career and contact with the SDS:[18]

para. 122: He was responsible for a number of departments, for example, Surveillance, Technical Support and one of these departments was the SDS. There was then either a detective chief inspector or detective inspector in operational charge.
para. 123: He stated that he had little day-to-day contact with operational officers. His areas of responsibility were strategic areas around budgets, staffing and policy. He would only know what was happening within a unit, if it was brought to his attention by a superintendent, or if he had visited a unit to speak with staff.
para. 138: He stated that he had been in Special Branch Ports Unit in 1995, and in September 1997, transferred to S Squad. The SDS was a small part of his responsibility and he considered it to be a self-contained unit. N35 never served on the SDS, he retired in 2003, still on S Squad.
para. 139: N35 stated that he would have had little operational involvement with undercover officers, he believed that a lot of SDS issues were taken straight to Colin

Black. He very rarely met with undercover officers, this was the remit of the Detective Inspector and Detective Chief Inspector.

para. 140: He would not have seen all tasking, but he could not recall any conflict over any tasking. The DCI and DI from SDS would periodically come to New Scotland Yard for meetings and they would update either Colin Black or himself. There were no regular meetings with SDS staff.

The misconduct investigation of N35 focused on him as a conduit of the note by Det. Ch. Insp. HN58 (N34), who was then head of the SDS, to Colin Black, which disclosed knowledge of the Walton-N81 meeting (para 76-83). With regards the meeting, he told the IPCC:[18]

para. 135: ‘I did not authorise the August 1998 meeting arranged by Detective Inspector Robert Lambert. Furthermore, I had no knowledge of it at the time and to the best of my recollection, I was not aware of it subsequently’

He also stated that he never knew Richard Walton (para. 141) and that he did not recall having knowledge of the meeting, though he accepted he had seen mention of it. The IPCC noted there was no evidence that N35 had prior knowledge of the meeting, though he did know of it after it had taken place (para. 193). The IPCC concluded that N35 did not consider the meeting inappropriate (para. 220) but stated: 'There is insufficient evidence that he was involved in authorising or making the arrangements to put this meeting in place' (para. 213). For this reason there was no scope to bring proceedings against N35.

Notes

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 Press Release: 'Minded to' note, ruling and directions in respect of anonymity applications relating to former officers of the Special Demonstration Squad, Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 3 August 2017 (accessed 3 August 2017).
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 2.15 2.16 John Mitting, In the matter of section 19(3) of the Inquiries Act 2005 Applications for restriction orders in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstrations Squad ‘Minded to’ note, Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 3 August 2017 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 David Barr & Kate Wilkinson, Counsel to the Inquiry's explanatory note to accompany the 'Minded to' note 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 Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 3 August 2017 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 Mick Creedon, Operation Herne Report 1: Covert Identities, Metropolitan Police Service, July 2013.
  5. No anonymity sought for N5, Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 20 December 2017 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  6. 6.0 6.1 John Mitting, In the matter of section 19(3) of the Inquiries Act 2005 Application for restriction order in respect of HN7 Ruling (Ruling in respect of HN7), Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 3 August 2017 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  7. 7.0 7.1 Mark Ellison, The Stephen Lawrence Independent Review - Volume 1: Possible corruption and the role of undercover policing in the Stephen Lawrence case, Gov.UK, March 2014.
  8. 8.0 8.1 The Chairman’s ‘Minded to’ note on applications for restriction orders in respect of two former undercover police officers, Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 20 October 2016 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.3 9.4 9.5 Mick Creedon, Operation Herne: Report 2 - Allegations of Peter Francis, Metropolitan Police Service, March 2014.
  10. 10.00 10.01 10.02 10.03 10.04 10.05 10.06 10.07 10.08 10.09 10.10 10.11 10.12 10.13 10.14 Mark Ellison, Possible corruption and the role of undercover policing in the Stephen Lawrence case, Stephen Lawrence Independent Review, Vol. 1, Gov.UK, March 2014
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 11.5 11.6 11.7 11.8 Supplementary ‘Minded to’ note on anonymity, updated and additional hearing dates, directions to the Metropolitan Police Service, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 23 October 2017 (accessed 23 October 2017 via UCPI.org.uk).
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 Sir John Mitting, Supplementary 'Minded-To', Undercover Policing Inquiry, 23 October 2017 (accessed 23 October 2017 via UCPI.org.uk).
  13. 13.0 13.1 Graham Walker, HN26 - Open risk assessment, Metropolitan Police Service, 24 July 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  14. Open application for a restriction order (anonymity) re: N26, Metropolitan Police Service, 30 July 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  15. Open revised supplemental application on behalf of N26 for restriction orders, Slater & Gordon LLP (solicitors), 21 July 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  16. 16.0 16.1 John Mitting, In the matter of section 19(3) of the Inquiries Act 2005 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 (Directions arising out of the 'Minded-To'), Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 3 August 2017 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  17. David Reid, N58 Risk Assessment (version 2 - gisted), Metropolitan Police Service, 25 May 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 18.4 Steve Bimson, Ellison Review - Walton, Lambert and Black: An investigation into the circumstances surrounding a meeting between A/Detective Inspector Richard Walton and an undercover officer on 14 August 1998, Independent Police Compliants Commission, 14 January 2016.
  19. David Reid, HN81 - Open Risk Assessment (redacted), Metropolitan Police Service28 June 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  20. No anonymity sought for Roger Pearce, Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 29 March 2017 (accessed 3 August 2017).
  21. Ruth Brander & Philippa Kaufmann QC, Submissions on behalf of the non-police, non-state core participants re the Chairman's 'Minded To' note dated 3 August 2017 concerning restriction order applications, 5 October 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  22. Update on anonymity applications – N118 ("Simon Wellings"), Undercover Policing Public Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 19 January 2017 (accessed 5 August 2017).
  23. Christopher Pitchford, Order pursuant to the ruling of 2 May 2017 granting an extention of time for service of anonymity applications by the Metropolitan Police Service in respect of the Special Demonstration Squad, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 18 May 2017.
  24. John Mitting, (1) The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and its impact on the Inquiry’s work (2) 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, 23 October 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk, 23 October 2017).