Activists Infiltrated By Chi. Cops Seek Apology


Activists from five groups whose meetings were infiltrated by Chicago police undercover officers went to police headquarters yesterday demanding an apology, the Chicago Tribune reports. A new internal police audit said that before a business summit in November 2002, police quietly sat in on rallies, fundraising events, and strategy sessions of the American Friends Service Committee, Not In Our Name, the Autonomous Zone, the Chicago Direct Action Network and the Anarchist Black Cross. Police had gleaned intelligence, largely from Web sites, that some of those organizing against the business meeting were plotting mayhem like that outside the 1999 World Trade Organization talks in Seattle. Police spokesman David Bayless said the department was “obligated to explore those threats.”

The Tribune says the infiltration appears to be the department’s first since the 7th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals loosened a consent decree in 2001 that had restricted law enforcement intelligence tactics in response to the Chicago Police Department’s Red Squad. Sheri Mecklenburg, general counsel to Police Supt. Philip Cline, said, “We did not target any group because of their ideology.”


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