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Terry Adams trial, the MI5 bug and the alleged £10,000 donation to the Labour Party

[via UK Commentators]

A snippet in the Sunday Times report about the trial of the criminal gang boss Terry Adams, prompts a couple of questions, regarding the MI5 electronic bugged conversation which claims that his brother Tommy had donated £10,000 to his local Labour Party:

The Sunday Times February 11, 2007
Focus: Bringing down our own Capone

Terry Adams, head of Britain’s foremost crime family, was finally brought to book last week by an MI5 trap

Michael Gillard, David Connett and Jonathan Calvert


What none of the brothers knew was that the authorities had at last had enough. Several trials had resulted in acquittals and rumours of jury tampering. This untouchable family had to be smashed. MI5, the security service, was brought in under its remit to tackle organised crime. Its operatives are masters of surveillance.

Since the establishment of the Serious Organised Crime Agency last year, MI5 are supposedly no longer involved in such "serious organised crime" surveillance.

The police and MI5 set up a secret squad based in Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, to dismantle the Adams organisation. The operation, codenamed Trinity, had to be completely secret as the family was thought to have corrupt police and customs officers on its payroll.

Did this suspicion prove to be true ? Have any corrupt police and customs officers been dealt with ?

Bugs were inserted into the lounge, bedroom and loft of Adams’s home and also Nahome’s office.

Domestic rows, inter-family relations and business strategies were all recorded and transmitted to a room in Thames House, the MI5 headquarters, where desk officers worked round the clock cataloguing recordings and passing the best passages on to the police.

Presumably the Chief Surveillance Commissioner was involved in authorising such intrusive surveillance involving interference with property, under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 Part II

We do not object to the use of state surveillance in such targeted investigations of serious criminals, if properly authorised.


Operation Trinity also bugged Tommy Adams’s black cab. He was overheard boasting that he had given a £10,000 donation to his local Labour party


Who is investigating this alleged payment to the Labour Party ?

When was the donation made ? Was it declared ? Were the Labour Party officials really not aware of the notorious background of this donor ? Who exactly were these Labour Party officials who took the money ?

Presumably if this was "Hatton Garden", then the local Labour Party Constituency was Hackney South & Shoreditch, currently held by Meg Hillier, but formerly held by Brian Sedgemore.

Obviously the money should not be handed back to a criminal, but who else was he paying off ?

Why is the Sunday Times relaying this snippet of information ?

Since Terence George Adams plead guilty at his trial, these "secret recordings" or their transcripts would not have been presented in open court, so the Sunday Times must have been briefed by Crown Prosecution Service, Police or MI5 "anonymous sources".

We have no love of the Labour Party, but does the briefing about this particular "criminal £10,000 Labour Party donation" recording or transcript, presumably specially selected from many hours of recordings, amount to a breach of the Security Service Act 1989 section 2, where the Director General of MI5 has a legal duty to ensure

(b) that the Service does not take any action to further the interests of any political party.

Since British politics is a zero sum game, potentially embarrassing allegations about one political party do "further the interests" of the other main political parties.


The story of the donation was published in the Observer almost nine years ago. The Labour Party said it had no record of any such donation and asked for more details, none were forthcoming.

You quote the story as saying he made the donation to his local Labour Party. In fact the transcript does not suggest that - it just says he gave money to "Labour" and no one seems to know what he meant by that.

@ a - "local Labour party" is what the Sunday Times report says.

Have you seen this transcript ?

If this relates to a 9 year old MI5 bugging session, then what was it doing as part of the trial of Tommy's brother Terry Adams, on unrelated charges, and who leaked it to the Sunday Times ?

According to this article in The Independent in 1998:

Secret local party donors banned
Independent, The (London), Sep 23, 1998
by Fran Abrams Westminster Correspondent


The revelation follows allegations that one of Britain's most powerful crime families gave pounds 2,000 to Labour, possibly to the Islington constituency, before the last election.


Labour has moved to rebut allegations that Tommy Adams, a London gangster jailed last week, gave money to the party. It said no such donation had been made nationally, but it could not rule out a local payment because officials had been unable to contact former treasurers.


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