In a landmark case due to be heard at the High Court next year, Mark Kennedy says his superiors at the Metropolitan Police knew he was sleeping with women he had been sent to spy on, but turned a blind eye because of the quality of intelligence he was providing.
In a writ filed last month, Kennedy, 43, is claiming damages of between £50,000 and £100,000 for ‘personal injury’ and ‘consequential loss and damage’ due to police ‘negligence’.
He has been diagnosed as suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome and is seeking compensation for the ‘emotional trauma’ suffered.
Last night he said: ‘I worked undercover for eight years. My superiors knew who I was sleeping with, but chose to turn a blind eye because I was getting such valuable information. The police had access to all my phone calls, texts and emails, many of which were of a sexual and intimate nature.They knew where I was spending the night and with whom. They did nothing to prevent me falling in love.
Kennedy, who went under the alias of Mark Stone, a tattooed climber, is claiming damages for ‘personal injury’ and ‘consequential loss and damage’
‘When my cover was blown it destroyed my life. I lost my job, my girlfriend and my reputation. I started self-harming and went to a shrink who diagnosed me with post-traumatic stress syndrome. The blame rests firmly at the feet of my superiors at the Met who had a duty to protect me.’
Ten women and one man are also suing the Met for emotional trauma saying they were duped into having sex with undercover officers. Three of the women are ex-lovers of Kennedy.
Their lawsuit states: ‘The men . . . used techniques they had been trained in to gain trust and thereby create the illusion they might be a “soulmate” to the women. There is no doubt that the officers obtained the consent of these women to sexual intercourse by deceit.’
Their case hit the headlines last week when police made a controversial bid to have it thrown out of the High Court and heard behind closed doors.
A legal source familiar with Kennedy’s case said: ‘He is as much a victim as the women are. The police failed to look after his psychiatric well-being and as a result he suffered post- traumatic stress for which the Met is responsible.’
Married Kennedy, who is now going through a divorce from his wife Edel, operated under the alias of Mark Stone, a long-haired heavily tattooed climber. The father of two worked for the secretive National Public Order Intelligence Unit. He says he cost the taxpayer £250,000 a year in wages and costs.
Kennedy was exposed when a £1 million trial against activists who allegedly planned to occupy a power plant in Nottinghamshire fell apart. Taped evidence he had made using a concealed microphone, which would have cleared the men, had not been presented in court.
All three of the women who had relationships with Kennedy have requested anonymity. He fell deeply in love with a red-haired Welsh activist he started sleeping with in 2004 and lived with from the end of 2005 until his cover was blown in 2010.
Kennedy says he had to have sex with the protesters to protect his cover. ‘The world of eco-activists is rife with promiscuity. Everyone sleeps with everyone else. If I hadn’t had sex they would have rumbled me as an informant,’ he said.
‘I knew I had crossed the line as an undercover officer by having sex with the people I was infiltrating, but I was coming under huge pressure from the Met to keep providing intelligence. Every time that I reached out for help or advice, I was told, ‘‘Carry on, you’re doing a great job.’’ They didn’t care who I hurt or the emotional trauma I would suffer.
‘When I was exposed, I started drinking heavily, cutting myself and plunged into a deep depression. I was tormented with guilt over the hurt I’d caused.’
A legal source said: ‘The gist of Mark’s claim is that his post- traumatic stress was foreseeable. The Met didn’t put in place a proper exit strategy when the undercover operation ended. They didn’t give him appropriate psychological counselling.
‘Police were negligent and that caused him to suffer post-traumatic stress disorder. Mark is claiming damages for that and also some loss of earnings.’
Kennedy is now working for a private security firm carrying out threat assessment for firms in Britain and America. He splits his time between rented homes on both sides of the Atlantic, but says he has found it impossible to live a ‘normal’ life.
He said last night: ‘I still have to watch my back because there are people out there who want to harm me. My life has been destroyed.
‘When you are out there doing a good job, those above you take the glory.
‘But when it all hits the fan, the blame is always put on the copper on the front line.’