“His wife was pregnant while he lived with me” – spycop victim demands the truth
Yesterday, we published the heart-breaking story of how Andrea (not her real name) fell in love with Carlo Neri, an undercover police officer. Today, she tells union-news.co.uk why an apology is not enough
Last year I discovered that Carlo had led two completely different lives.
Activists and researchers who had their suspicions put all the pieces together and provided unquestionable proof that Carlo was an undercover police officer, his profession documented on his marriage certificate and his children’s birth certificates. The picture of the child on his bookcase was his real child. His family had a successful food business. His wife was pregnant with his second child whilst he lived with me.
Before my old friends got in touch to voice their suspicions about Carlo, I had read a book called Undercover, detailing the way that undercover police infiltrated political groups. “Read this book,” my friend said, “it really is appalling.” I also went to see the comedian and activist Mark Thomas. He talked about the women who had been deceived into relationships by spycops and I thought “Oh my god, I’m not making this up, am I?” Their stories screamed out at me.
Carlo has been planted on my landscape again – like a massive stain, obscuring my view of everything else. When this happens to you, when your narrative becomes a fiction, life itself becomes fragmented. There’s a ripple effect. It impacts on your relationships, your work, your family, and when you start to uncover the truth, you still find out only a part of that truth. It is an enormously cruel thing to do.
I don’t know why I was chosen. Wrong place, wrong time? A mere convenience? It seems I provided a cover so that this man could infiltrate the trade unions and movements that he was sent to spy on. On the day we met, those friends were active trade unionists, and several of them are core participants in the Pitchford Inquiry. Several were blacklisted. Not all of them worked in construction, but their names made the Consulting Association files.
I want the truth and I want an apology. I want the Met to tell me what information they hold on me. There is no longer any denial that Carlo was an undercover police officer, but we still need full disclosure of the other spies like him who have invaded lives and caused untold misery with their state-sanctioned abuse. And we need to know that this awful practice has stopped. I am yet to be convinced.