Covert Investigation

Covert Investigation

Paperback Blackstone's Practical Policing

By (author) Clive Harfield, By (author) Karen Harfield


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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Format: Paperback | 416 pages
  • Dimensions: 156mm x 232mm x 24mm | 621g
  • Publication date: 7 September 2012
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 0199646988
  • ISBN 13: 9780199646982
  • Edition: 3, Revised
  • Edition statement: 3rd Revised edition
  • Sales rank: 724,084

Product description

The third edition of Covert Investigation continues to provide a practical, straightforward guide for anyone working in the area of covert investigation. This edition is updated to include significant amendments to the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 brought about by the Police and Crime Act 2009, as well as revisions to the Codes of Practice. Also included are discussions reflecting the considerations of Parliamentary and Home Office reviews of surveillance practice and law: reviews undertaken in response to practitioner concerns about the RIPA authority regime and wider public concerns about an emerging surveillance society. The book contains all the relevant legislation, codes of practice and case-law relating to covert investigation methods and examines the issues that investigators need to consider when deploying such investigative tools, concentrating on the full implications of RIPA with regards to daily, routine policing activity. The authors consider each different aspect of covert investigation in turn, discussing statutory provision and introducing case law alongside investigation management issues. It successfully demystifies an area of investigation and enforcement that has hitherto been poorly understood. It is intended to assist those planning and supervising investigations and those with a statutory obligation to sanction applications for authorised covert investigation or withhold such authority. It will help officers improve the quality of RIPA applications and ensure that applications for cover investigation are made only in appropriate circumstances. In particular, the third edition looks at incontrovertible evidence, the strict statutory and procedural frameworks governing collection of such evidence, and how to minimize the risk of unwitting abuse of these powers and procedures which can lead to technical acquittals and procedural challenges at court. The book forms part of the Blackstone's Practical Policing Series. The series, aimed at junior to middle ranking officers, consists of practical guides containing clear and detailed explanations of the relevant legislation and practice, accompanied by case studies, illustrative diagrams and useful checklists.


Author information

Karen Harfield is the Executive Director of Performance and Stakeholder Relations at the Australian Crime Commission (ACC). She joined the ACC in 2008. Ms Harfield began her policing career in 1992 and progressed through a range of roles to Chief Superintendent with Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary. Other roles have included Detective Chief Inspector with the National Crime Squad, Director of Intelligence with Warwickshire Police and Senior Investigating Officer for homicide and specialist covert investigations. In 2000, she was selected to attend the US Government International Visitors Program. For more than 60 years, the International Visitors Program has brought foreign leaders and specialists to the United States for firsthand exposure to their professional counterparts and US society. The emphasis of the program is to increase mutual understanding through communication at the personal and professional levels.

Review quote

In all, this book is very thorough and an increasingly important topic, covert investigation abroad, is to be found in chapter 10. Sally Ramage, The Criminal Lawyer

Table of contents

1. Covert investigation in context ; 2. Directed surveillance ; 3. Intrusive surveillance ; 4. Interference with property or wireless telegraphy and entry onto land ; 5. Covert investigation and computers ; 6. Examining mobile phones ; 7. Communications data ; 8. Interception of communications ; 9. Covert human intelligence sources ; 10. Covert investigation abroad ; 11. Risk management ; APPENDICES ; A. Covert Surveillance and Property Interference: Revised Code of Practice ; B. Investigation of Protected Electronic Information Code of Practice ; C. Acquisition and Disclosure of Communications Data Code of Practice ; D. Interception of Communications Code of Practice ; E. Covert Human Intelligence Sources Code of Practice