Lee Bonser (alias)

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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
'HN33/98'
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Alias: Kathryn Lesley 'Lee' Bonser
Deployment: 1983-87
Unit:
Targets:
Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp, Socialist Workers Party

Kathryn Lesley 'Lee' Bonser is a former undercover officer with the Special Demonstration Squad, who from 1983 to 1987 infiltrated both the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp and the Socialist Workers Party.[1]

She is also referred to by the ciphers HN33 & HN98 (for the HN cipher system, see the N officers page). The Chair of the Undercover Policing Inquiry, Sir John Mitting, has ruled that her real name will be restricted in that Inquiry.[2]

In the Undercover Policing Inquiry

  • 8 November 2018: Mitting ruled that her real name will be restricted for the purposes of the Inquiry, stating:[2]
She will be required to give public evidence about her deployment. This may result in the disclosure of her real name. At this stage, that is a risk, not a certainty. Taking that risk is a price worth paying to permit the Inquiry to conduct a full investigation into her deployment. Public concern about it, which is likely to arise, will not be allayed by converting the risk into a certainty, however much the traditional media may wish that it should be. For the reasons expressed in the "minded to" note dated 7 March 2018 and in the accompanying closed note, converting the risk into a certainty would interfere with her right to respect for private and family life under Article 8 ECHR and would not be justified.
  • 2 October 2018: applications from the Metropolitan Police's Department of Legal Services[3] and also the Designated Legal Team[4] to restrict HN200's real name was released,with a deadline for responses of 23 October.[5]
  • 13 September 2018: following responses to the 'Minded To', open material relating to the publication of the real name will be published, with date for responding.[6]
  • 3 July 2018: cover name and groups targeted released by Inquiry.[1]
  • 22 March 2018: application over cover name refused; minded to restrict real name. Inquiry Chair, Sir John Mitting, wrote:[7]
HN33 is a sexagenarian who was principally deployed into one group in the mid-1980s. The deployment is of significant interest to the Inquiry, because the group was non-violent and posed no serious threat to public order. The reason for the deployment must be publicly investigated to permit the Inquiry to fulfil its terms of reference. HN33 appears to have been the only undercover officer deployed into this group. The publication of the cover name of HN33 is necessary to permit former members of the group to provide information and/or give evidence about the deployment. They pose no threat to the safety of HN33. There is a small risk that publication of the cover name would lead to the identification of the real name of HN33, which may give rise to unwelcome media attention. It would not give rise to anything worse. It is the price which must be paid to permit the Inquiry to conduct a full investigation into the deployment.
Publication of the real name is not required to permit the Inquiry to fulfil its terms of reference. It would interfere with the right to respect for private and family life of HN33 and would be neither proportionate nor justified under Article8(2) of the European Convention.
A closed note accompanies these reasons.
  • 20 Feb 2018: directions issued that applications for restriction orders to be submitted by end of month.[8]
  • Nov 2017: extent of restriction sought unclear and MPS asked to clarify this.[9]

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Email to core participants, '20180703_UCPI_to_all_CPs_publishing_HN33_HN96_HN304', Undercover Policing Inquiry, 3 July 2018, referencing update of the webpage UCPI.org/cover-names.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Sir John Mitting, Applications for restriction orders in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Demonstration Squad and Special Duties Squad Ruling 13, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 8 November 2018.
  3. Department of Legal Services, Open application for a restriction order (anonymity) re: HN33, Metropolitan Police Service, 27 November 2017 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  4. Designated Legal Team, Open application for restriction order (anonymity) in respect of HN33's cover name, Metropolitan Police Service, 28 February 2018 (accessed via UCPI.org.uk).
  5. Sir John Mitting, Restriction Order Applications by HN4, HN13, HN25, HN30, HN33, HN82, HN96. HN200 and HN304, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 2 October 2018.
  6. 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.
  7. Sir John Mitting, In the matter of section 19(3) of the Inquiries Act 2005 Application for restriction order in respect of the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstration Squad 'Minded To' Note 6 and Ruling 5, Undercover Policing Inquiry (UCPI.org.uk), 22 March 2018 (accessed 28 March 2018).
  8. 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, 20 February 2018 (accessed 1 March 2018).
  9. Counsel to the Inquiry's Explanatory note to accompany the 'Minded-To' Note (2) in respect for restrictions over the real and cover names of officers of the Special Operations Squad and the Special Demonstration Squad, Undercover Policing Inquiry, 14 November 2017.