Women suing the undercover police

I do have to admit that I don\’t quite get this.

Birnberg Peirce and partners have commenced legal action against the Metropolitan Police on behalf of eight women who were deceived into having long term intimate relationships with undercover police officers.

The five undercover officers* were all engaged in infiltrating environmental and social justice campaign groups between the mid 1980\’s and 2010 and had relationships with the women lasting from seven months and the longest spanning nine years.

The women assert that the actions of the undercover officers breached their rights as protected by the European Convention on Human Rights, including Article 3 (no one shall be subject to inhumane and degrading treatment) and Article 8 (respect for private and family life, including the right to form relationships without unjustified interference by the state).

The women are also bringing claims for deceit, assault, misfeasance in public office and negligence, and seek to highlight and prevent the continuation of psychological, emotional and sexual abuse of campaigners and others by undercover police officers.

That the women are hurt, have been in some sense betrayed, yes, I get that.

But this is men lying to get women into bed. Naughty, shouldn\’t be done, but trying to make it illegal rather upends the human experience doesn\’t it?

8 comments on “Women suing the undercover police

  1. ‘In a sense betrayed’?

    Come on; simple lust with subsequent betrayal is acceptable. (Oh, all right – not nice, but human)

    Simulated lust – in this case by a government employee – in order to acquire information in order to injure friends and acquaintances of the person being bedded (please note gender neutrality!) is another kind of ball game. Talk about adding insult to injury!

  2. Do we know that the cops didn’t actually fancy the crusties? Especially halfway down a gallon of Freetraid cider?

  3. Of course they fancied them SE. It would have gone down on the report as “well, just another sacrifice in the name of the law” but, in reality…

    If people you had slept with could sue for deceit and betrayal, my ex girlfriends could work up a reasonable class action. All those promises about giving up the booze and smokes, being a better partner, etc. This is insane.

  4. …no one shall be subject to inhumane and degrading treatment…

    If this can be applied in the context of sexual relations, or at least attempted sexual relations, then I can quit the oil business and look forward to my seven-figure compensation package resulting from the treatment I received during my Freshers Week.

  5. Wasn’t there a character in Eco’s “The Island of the Day Before” who boasted “I never lie, except when making a profession of love”.

    There used to be a civil cause of action for obtaining favours of a woman under thirty by false professions of love. There also used to be one for breach of promise – maybe there still is.

    I really don’t see anything wrong with that. Yes, using deception to obtain favours has always been with us. So has theft – it’s not exactly a recommendation.

    The basic benefit of such a straightforward cause of action is that it gets right to the point. If you lie to women you have no feelings for to get them into bed that is a pretty nasty thing to do.

  6. And what of women who lie to get men ( rich) into bed – once known as gold diggers. And the divorce laws that enrich them.
    Or is that different?

  7. Major point-missing going on here. The point isn’t that some chaps were caddish, it’s that *a government agency allegedly enabled their caddish behaviour*. That’s why the women here are suing the Met, and not the caddish chaps.

    This is the whole point about the HRA and the ECHR – they don’t protect you from having bad stuff done to you by other people (so your ex’s lies aren’t covered), but they do protect you from having bad stuff done to you by the government.

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