N.Y. police ‘spied on’protesters

NEW YORK, Reuters

Undercover New York City police, apparently acting partially in response to the Sept. 11 attacks, conducted covert observations across the United States and in Europe of people planning protests at the 2004 Republican National Convention, the New York Times said. The newspaper said in Sunday’s edition that records indicated the “R.N.C. Intelligence Squad” attended meetings of political groups, posing as sympathizers or activists, to glean information on people or groups intending to disrupt the convention.

But hundreds of reports, stamped “N.Y.P.D. Secret”, indicated that church groups, theater companies and antiwar organizations, as well as environmentalists, anti-death penalty activists and others opposed to globalization, were all surveyed and included in the files, the Times said. Intelligence on apparently lawful activities was also shared with police departments in other cities, it said.