During the height of the conflict in the north-east of the country it was not unknown for the British Forces to make anonymous transfers of money into the bank accounts of suspected insurgents or civilian sympathisers. Invariably these deposits was carried out in order to test an individual’s susceptibility to bribery. However the tactic was also used to undermine targeted men and women, with the knowledge that the counterintelligence officers of the Irish Republican Army might demand the bank records of people under suspicion. Remarkably, some two decades after the conflict effectively came to an end these same tactics are still being pursued by the intelligence and policing services of the United Kingdom.
A court has ordered the PSNI not to pay money directly into the bank account of a man it allegedly tried to recruit as an informer.
His legal team launched a challenge after he allegedly received a call on his mobile phone from a person claiming to be a police officer earlier this month.
It was said that during the call the officer, who identified himself, asked the man about several individuals and told him that cash was going to be lodged in his account several days later.
The man launched legal action in a bid to stop cash being transferred.
It is believed the police involved were attached to the PSNI’s C3 unit, which used to be known as Special Branch.
It is not the first time that security forces have been accused of putting cash into people’s bank accounts.
Last November north Belfast woman Arlene Shannon claimed that MI5 [The UK Security Service] lodged £300 in her bank without her permission.
Earlier this month Co Fermanagh woman Sharon Boyle also alleged that two detectives gave her Next and Asda gift cards valued at £150 each after she was approached at her home in Enniskillen.
While such activities may gather information from the corruptible they can also lead to the violent deaths of those involved, whether guilty or innocent. And have done so many times in the past.