A former police officer who is now a prominent climate crisis campaigner has accused the Metropolitan police of attempting to recruit him to spy on Extinction Rebellion.
Former detective sergeant Paul Stephens, who joined XR after he retired from the London force in 2018, claims he was approached by an officer he knew near Parliament Square during the group’s campaign of non-violent mass civil disobedience in London in October 2019.
“He asked if I wanted to come on the books – to become a covert human intelligence source [Chis],” Stephens said. “But I turned him down straight away. I joined XR to make those in power do something about climate change, not to spy on peaceful people doing their bit for the planet.”
The Met said it could “neither confirm nor deny any Chis activity in relation to Extinction Rebellion”.