Hidden cost of undercover informers

A request made by the Croydon Advertiser, under the Freedom of Information Act, for figures that show how much cash is paid out to undercover informers in Croydon was turned down by the Metropolitan Police Service because bosses claim agents could be put in danger.

The force also said disclosure of the amount paid each year to its covert sources could damage its ability to fight crime in Croydon. A spokesman said: "Given the experience of law enforcement agencies, there is little doubt that there are very severe consequences for persons who are identified as sources."

Cost of undercover informers kept confidential (icCroydon.co.uk website, 5 April 2006)