The Telegraph obtained leaked documents that showed that the Scotland Yard Unit that investigates some of the most sensitive police inquiries was “corrupted” by a high powered PI firm.
Retired detectives ran RISC Management Ltd and are under investigation for targeting former police colleagues. They are thought to have done so to obtain sensitive information about investigations by London’s Metropolitan Police.
Scotland Yard set up its own investigation into whether the SCD6, the force’s economic and specialist crime division, had been compromised by the PI firm. The agency used a covert branch of its own anti-corruption squad—the Intelligence Development Group.
According to the Telegraph, the probe identified more than 300 phone calls that took place between Metropolitan police officers and PIs from RISC Management Ltd over the course of a year. The report stated that one police officer was even given a “dirty” cell phone so he could secretly report back to the PI firm.
Scotland Yard’s probe bugged the PIs and followed them when they met with police officers. In addition, the agency secretly monitored its own phone records, access to sensitive databases, and work computers to look for evidence of leaks.
RISC Management’s history is full of intrigue. A lawyer who worked for oligarchs in Russia initially set up the firm. He later died in a suspicious helicopter crash. Some of the UK’s richest and most famous businessmen patronized the PI firm which even helped England bid to host the World Cup.
RISC Management continued receiving information from its high-level police sources until January 2014 when it went into administration.
Ironically, a source had warned Scotland Yard that detectives in its specialist crime division were too close to some PI firms. The disclosure of the investigations by RISC Management PIs raises concerns that some of England’s most sensitive police inquiries might have been compromised.