MI5 ‘intercepts lawyers’ papers’

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Published: Thursday 6th November 2014 by The News Editor

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Security and intelligence agencies “intentionally target and use” lawyer-to-client materials covered by legal professional privilege (LPP), previously top-secret documents have revealed.

MI5, MI6 and GCHQ until recently did not hold policies that blocked their lawyers and officials from seeing intercepted privileged material about cases they were involved in, the documents also revealed.

Policy papers held by MI5, MI6 and GCHQ on dealing with LPP material have been disclosed through the Investigatory Powers Tribunal (IPT), which examines complaints against the intelligence services and government use of surveillance.

Disclosure of all these materials was resisted on national security grounds by the Government until an IPT hearing last week when it reversed its position.

Campaigners and lawyers involved with the hearing said the disclosures raise “troubling implications for the whole British justice system” as the Government could be handed an unfair advantage in court if it has access to privileged materials.

Published: Thursday 6th November 2014 by The News Editor

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