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UK Facing Undercover Cop Crisis

Author: Jonty Skrufff
Saturday, April 30, 2005
London's Metropolitan Police are to launch their first ever recruitment drive for undercover cops, after admitting this week that the numbers of trained operatives has dropped from "several hundred to just a handful'.

"People think undercover is all Ferraris and Armani suits," Covert operations Detective Chief Inspector Kevin O'Leary told the Independent, "the reality is a Ford Mondeo and a flat in Peckham."

Agents routinely need to construct elaborate fake identities as part of their job and risk "potential lethal consequences if they are exposed', the newspaper added, which could prove troublesome for agents assigned to attend this year's Homelands, following a cheeky "undercover cop' alert in the new issue of Mixmag.

Under the headline "Plainclothes pigs at Homelands', the UK magazine claimed undercover cops are a fixture of the annual event, adding "they loiter in the queues just before the sniffer dogs. Be warned."