The Undercover Policing Inquiry was set up in 2015 to get to the truth about undercover policing across England and Wales since 1968 and provide recommendations for the future.
Its hearings started on Monday, 2 November. The first few days will be taken up with opening statements on behalf of the various ‘core participants’ involved. The Inquiry will then move on to consider its first evidence, focusing at this stage on activities in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Nicholas Griffin QC, head of QEB’s Inquests, Inquiries and Public Law group, is representing the Home Secretary and, through her, the Home Office at the Inquiry.
The Inquiry’s website gives this further background:
‘In 2015 the then Home Secretary, Theresa May announced that there would be a judge-led inquiry into undercover policing.
This was in response to independent reviews by Mark Ellison QC, which found “appalling practices in undercover policing”. In a statement that accompanied the publication of the Inquiry’s terms of reference, Theresa May said:
“Undercover policing is an essential tactic in the fight against crime but any allegation that the police misused this power must be taken seriously…This inquiry will not only look at historical failings but make recommendations to ensure those unacceptable practices are not repeated in the future.”’