21 Feb 2019

The Undercover Policing Inquiry has today published two new ‘issues lists’ which the Inquiry will use to direct and focus its investigations of undercover policing.

The lists set out questions which are central to the first part of the Inquiry’s investigations. That is, getting to the truth of each officers’ deployment, their conduct and the impact of their activities.

The issues list for the National Public Order Intelligence Unit (PDF, 1.8MB) contains 161 questions. There are also 21 questions (PDF, 468KB) to investigate undercover policing carried out by forces other than the Special Demonstration Squad and the National Public Order Intelligence Unit.

The lists cover a variety of topics including:

  • what the relationship between undercover organisations were
  • how officers were recruited, selected and trained
  • how officers built their legends and the use of deceased individuals identities
  • how and why organisations were targeted
  • if deployments were justified
  • if deployments prevented, detected or helped the prosecution of crime.

Both lists had been consulted on (PDF, 31KB) in July 2018. Each final list is accompanied by a Counsel explanatory note (here (PDF, 479KB) and here (PDF, 552KB)) which explains the rationale for the questions asked, respondents’ views and discusses changes from the provisional lists.

These lists follow the publication in July 2018 of the issues list for officers of the Special Demonstration Squad (PDF, 82KB).

The issues lists do not prevent the Inquiry from investigating any further areas of interest, provided that they fall within the Terms of Reference.

Anonymity decisions for HN16 and HN48

Alongside this, the Inquiry has also issued new anonymity decisions (PDF, 399KB) for three former Special Demonstration Squad officers:

  • HN16
  • HN48

The officer HN16 – who made use of the names of James Straven and Kevin Crossland (PDF, 722KB) – has had his restriction order revoked.

This is because HN16 had admitted conducting sexual relationships with two women while deployed – “Ellie (PDF, 343KB)” and “Sara (PDF, 133KB)“. Both women have now been named as core participants and granted anonymity.

HN16’s real name will not now be redacted in documents that the Inquiry will publish in due course. In the meantime, Ellie and Sara expressed a wish to know HN16’s real name.

The Chair considered that it would not be fair for them to have to wait until the documents were published, and so Ellie and Sara were informed of HN16’s name in October 2018

Separately, the Chairman has also ruled that neither HN48’s real or cover name can be published. An updated counsel note is published alongside this press release.

New directions issued

The Chairman has also issued directions (PDF, 173KB) for responses by 4pm 21 March 2019 from the media or core participants on previous provisional ‘Minded to’ decisions.

These are to restrict the real names of:

  • HN18
  • HN66
  • HN122
  • HN299/342
  • HN344

This Inquiry aims to be as transparent as possible, and so far more than 64 undercover police officers have had their cover names published.

In order to help get to the truth of undercover policing, the Chairman can grant anonymity. This is through a restriction order – a protective measure under the Inquiries Act 2005.

When granting a restriction order, the Chairman considers a number of legal factors and principles (PDF, 583KB).

The directions, rulings and orders webpage contains copies of any restriction orders made. Copies of the open versions of the anonymity applications are also on the website.


The purpose of the Undercover Policing Inquiry is to investigate and report on undercover police operations conducted by English and Welsh police forces in England and Wales since 1968. The Inquiry will examine the contribution undercover policing has made to tackling crime, how it was and is supervised and regulated, and its effect on individuals involved – both police officers and others who came into contact with them.

The work of the Inquiry ranges across the full scope of undercover policing work and will look at the work of the Special Demonstration Squad, the National Public Order Intelligence Unit and police forces in England and Wales. The Inquiry will also examine whether people may have been wrongly convicted in cases involving undercover police officers, and refer any such cases to a separate panel for consideration.

The Inquiry’s investigations are broken down into modules. The descriptions of modules Two and Three have been amended to spell out more clearly the Inquiry’s investigative intentions.


Examination of the deployment of undercover officers in the past, their conduct, and the impact of their activities on themselves and others.


Examination of the management and oversight of undercover officers, including their selection, training, supervision, care after the end of an undercover deployment and the legal and regulatory framework within which undercover policing is carried out. Module Two (a) will involve managers and administrators from within undercover policing units. Module Two (b) will involve senior managers higher in the chain of command as well as police personnel who handled intelligence provided by undercover police officers. Module Two (c) will involve a number of other government bodies with a connection to undercover policing, including the Home Office.


Examination of current undercover policing practices and of how undercover policing should be conducted in future.


  1. The Undercover Policing Inquiry is constituted under the Inquiries Act 2005 (PDF, 207KB)
  2. The Inquiry’s terms of reference were announced by the Home Secretary on 16 July 2015.
  3. The Inquiry’s Strategic Review (PDF, 829KB) was published in May 2018.
  4. The Inquiry’s Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 96KB) document provides more information on the Inquiry more generally, as do its published update notes
  5. The Inquiry’s website is www.ucpi.orq.uk and the Inquiry can be found on Twitter @ucpinquiry.

For further information please contact the Inquiry’s Head of Communications, Patrick Coyne:

Email: [email protected]

Tel: 07766 524224