BBC reports on MI5 spy who ‘used status to abuse girlfriend’ after ruling

The BBC has reported on the story for the first time since an unprecedented legal battle in which the Government sought an injunction.

Nina Lloyd
Thursday 19 May 2022 18:38
The corporation reported that evidence shows the agent is a violent ‘right-wing extremist’ (Jonathan Brady/PA)
The corporation reported that evidence shows the agent is a violent ‘right-wing extremist’ (Jonathan Brady/PA)

An MI5 spy reportedly exploited his status to wage a long-running campaign of “terror” against his girlfriend that saw him attack her with a machete and threaten to kill her.

The BBC has reported on the story for the first time since the ruling in a legal battle where the Government sought to block publication of the agent’s identity.

An injunction remains in place to prevent the corporation from disclosing information likely to identify the man, referred to only as “X”, who is said to be a covert human intelligence source (Chis).

But the BBC said on Wednesday a High Court ruling will allow it to make details known about the informant’s alleged abuse towards two different women.

There was so much psychological terror from him to me, that ultimately culminated in me having a breakdown, because I was so afraid of everything

X's alleged victim

On Thursday, the corporation reported that evidence shows the agent is a violent “right-wing extremist” who hoarded Nazi paraphernalia and routinely terrorised his partner.

The foreign national moved abroad and continued intelligence work after assaulting the alleged victim with a machete and threatening to kill her, according to the BBC.

The incident was allegedly caught on camera but the corporation say there were “serious issues” in the police response, including a failure to take a full statement from the woman or obtain the video.

X was arrested and charged over the attack but the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) allegedly dropped the case when it reached court, the BBC says.

“There was so much psychological terror from him to me, that ultimately culminated in me having a breakdown, because I was so afraid of everything – because of how he’d made me think, the people that he was involved with, and the people who he worked for,” the BBC quotes the woman as saying.

The police also allegedly uncovered extremist material including Nazi paraphernalia in X’s home, but he later left the country.

The BBC say they have also located a separate woman who had also suffered at the hands of X in a different country.

Suella Braverman sought an injunction to block a planned broadcast (James Manning/PA)

The corporation said the story is “firmly in the public interest” and has argued that women have a right to know his identity and it would protect potential victims from harm.

Attorney General Suella Braverman sought an injunction to block a planned broadcast which would identify the man, arguing it would damage national security and create “a real and immediate risk of serious or life-threatening harm” to him.

Mr Justice Chamberlain has previously said the BBC can still air the programme and the key issues, but not identify X.

Lawyers representing Ms Braverman said at a previous hearing that she “neither confirms or denies” the BBC’s claim that X is an agent, but conducted the case on the “hypothetical assumption” that he is or was.

Following the publication of the ruling on Wednesday, the BBC said: “This ruling enables us to tell a story we believe is firmly in the public interest, and it is a vindication of the BBC’s investigative journalism.”

A Government spokesperson said: “As a matter of long-standing policy we will not comment on security or intelligence.

“As the judge in this case says, the interim injunction, which the Government was granted in April, is aimed at protecting national security and avoiding a real and immediate risk to life, safety and privacy.”

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in