11 November 2020
Green Party peer Jenny Jones has condemned the Covert Human Intelligence Sources (Criminal Conduct) Bill ahead of its second reading in the House of Lords today. 
Baroness Jones, who was herself the subject of covert police surveillance for more than a decade, said:
“The police are paid to uphold the law; this Bill allows officers to either act illegally, or to pay others to break it. It is one of the most dangerous pieces of legislation any government has ever proposed.
"The government has learnt a major lesson from the spycops scandal and are passing legislation to ensure that innocent people, who become victims of devastating state intrusion in their personal lives, can never take legal action to get justice."
The Green Party are particularly concerned about the creation of special units like the Special Demonstration Squad (SDS), which for many years worked outside the normal channels and reported directly to the Home Office. Such dubious activity can undermine the legal process.
Baroness Jones concluded:
"Court cases have collapsed in recent years as it emerged that police officers broke the law and acted as agents provocateurs when undercover. Our democracy requires that nobody is above the law and this must apply in particular to those who apply the law.”