13 August 2020
One of the women deceived into a long-term relationship by an undercover police officer has waived her anonymity and, in an interview with The Scotsman, has revealed her experiences with a 'spycop' who went by the cover name Carlo Neri.
"Imagine waking up one day to discover that two of the best years of your life were a fiction; that the man who had shared your bed, proposed to you, asked you to have his child, was not a knight in shining armour, but an undercover police officer interested in you only as a supplier of useful information.
Imagine realising that all those things you thought you had in common – your politics, your taste in books and music – were not fate working her magic, but the result of a cynical mirroring exercise designed to reel you in.
Imagine finding out the mental breakdown you tried to help him through was a ploy, a cynical means of extricating himself from your life.
Then, imagine – in a cruel twist – that these revelations forced you to lead a double life; to take on a pseudonym and deceive your friends, just as he had deceived you.
This is what happened to McLean, who comes from Ayrshire. In 2015, she found out the man she knew as Carlo Neri was, in fact, a married father of one young child (and later two), and member of the Metropolitan Police’s top secret Special Demonstration Squad (SDS). Since then, she has juggled two identities: Donna, a mother of 11-year-old twin girls, who works in mental health services, and “Andrea”, one of at least 30 women duped into relationships with spies who infiltrated protest groups. As Andrea, she has been fundraising, campaigning, giving talks and interviews, and preparing to take part in the Mitting Inquiry into undercover policing."
See: Loving a lie: The woman who found her fiance was an undercover police officer (The Scotsman, link)
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