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Call out for 'domestic extremists' to take action against ACPO

acpowatch | 06.08.2010 16:31 | Repression

The murky, unaccountable private body known as ACPO (Association of Chief Police Officers) runs NPOIU (the National Public Order Intelligence Unit) and this organisation holds a huge, secret, national database of 'domestic extremists'. Are you on it? Would you like to join a campaign to challenge ACPO, stop them collecting such information and make them remove what's already there? Read on...


'Domestic extremist' is a vague term with no definition in law, coined by the cops for people they want to keep tabs on. It has nothing to do with housework, but everything to do with people like you (and me), who are probably already labelled as such if you are involved in activism, campaigning, regularly attend protests etc.

The connections between local police forces, the police national computer database and NPOIU's domestic extremist database aren't entirely clear, but it is likely that once you've been identified as a 'domestic extremist', your details might well end up on the Police National Computer if they weren't there already, helpfully passed on by NPOIU. It also seems that information collected by local forces is fed into NPOIU's database, with no accountability whatsoever.

Anton Setchell, the National Coordinator for Domestic Extremism at ACPO said in 2009 that "If it is just a street type of protest, or sitting in a field or something, I will probably never ever speak to those forces about it whatsoever. I deal with the more serious stuff, that requires slightly more sophisticated analysis and co-ordination and investigation, which doesn't mean people sitting in roads or chaining themselves to a fence." This was either an outright lie, or Setchell's "more serious stuff" includes mere attendance at demos. See, for instance, the experiences of John and Linda Catt, as reported in the Guardian earlier this year:

and this article from 2009:


None of this will be of any surprise to people who are regularly being harassed by the cops, but you may be interested in a campaign which hopes to bring a group legal action to seek a judicial review of ACPO's practices which are believed to be unlawful, amounting to a breach of human rights and personal privacy. If you are interested in being part of this challenge, and hopefully getting your details removed from the database, then the first step is to obtain the personal data held on you by ACPO by making a Subject Access Request under section 7 of the Data Protection Act 1998.

Forms can be requested from ACPO by phoning 0207 084 8950 or writing to ACPO, Seventh Floor, 10 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0NN. You'll need to send a cheque for a tenner with your application, made payable to the Association of Chief Police Officers. Alternatively, if you don't like forms, you can just write to ACPO, enclosing a cheque and copies of documents proving your identity and address, ask for your letter to be considered as a Subject Access Request under s7 of the DPA and ask for copies of all your personal data along with photographic images (stills and video footage) held by ACPO. Obviously, you may not wish to supply ACPO with more information in this respect than they are already likely to have in their possession.

Once they've received a valid request and the tenner, ACPO have 40 days to respond. It might be worth sending your request by recorded delivery, or phoning early on to check that it's been received and is being dealt with, although they are very cagey on the phone, and might try to fob you off. Make it absolutely clear that it's the domestic extremist database you're interested in when you call.

Once you have received your own personal record of domestic extremism, or rather the part of it that ACPO considers you're entitled to, please get in touch with us via the email address below. The more the merrier!

Background information about 'domestic extremism', ACPO and NPOIU can be found here:

- e-mail: auto477577[at]


Hide the following 8 comments

Let me get this right - you want me to PAY to be placed on a database?

06.08.2010 16:47

You want me to PAY ACPO £10 and tell them I'm the sort of person they should be interested in - just in case they haven't heard of me?

This is a filth inspired con !


It's only worth doing...

06.08.2010 17:45

... if you are very sure you are on it. If you are someone who has been continually arrested at protests you can be sure they will have information about you, they also hold information on people that associate with those said people.

If you are someone who hasn't been arrested, and hasn't received any police attention, then it's probably best not to contact ACPO.


That would be daft.....

06.08.2010 17:55

Knd of see where you're coming from but as copwatch said, why give the filth a letter / form stating that you would fit the bill of 'domestic extremist/terrorist/whatever' so they are then fully furnished with your details, your tenner, and that you are one of the few with the nouse to stand up against state repression / whatever cause...?
I dont think giving the state your details to check whether they have them already is a very good idea really....


What's wrong with this picture...?

06.08.2010 21:26

You are asking people to write to the ENEMY: ACPO, a private limited company with no accountability, providing:

Name, address
A cheque which will include your bank account number and sort code

Are you nuts?!

And then you're asking people to fund ACPO by adding 10 quid to their coffers... No, thanks!!!

"acpowatch" can only be someone from ACPO itself!


@ puzzled

07.08.2010 07:34

Obviously, this action is not for everyone, but...

If you are pretty sure that they already hold your details and want to do something to stop this completely unaccountable surveillance of thousands of us, then you won't be providing them with more info than they already have, you can send a postal order if you're worried about a cheque, and you can rest assured that it'll cost ACPO a good deal more than a tenner to dig out all your details, take legal advice on what they have to disclose to you, and write you a letter containing this information, not to mention defending any legal action against them which follows. Of course, it's all public money they're using, but if it stops them in the long run it'll be worth it.

Each to their own, though. No obligation!


or write to them with made up names and addresses

07.08.2010 08:41

It will cost a tenner, but it might keep them busy looking for details of non-existent people.

How do they confirm you really are the person whose details you are asking for?

What stops me pretending to be someone else and getting their details?

If ACPO is a private company, maybe someone can get the company records and find out who runs it.


Companies House

07.08.2010 12:22

ACPO and Netcu are both run as private companies...

I can't find their details in Companies House. They surely must be registered there if they are companies.

They must be registered with fake names? Any ideas? I'm up for purchasing their records from companies house and publishing them for all to see.


Oh yes they are!

07.08.2010 13:47

From their website:

"The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) is not a staff association (the separately constituted Chief Police Officers' Association fulfils that function). ACPO's work is on behalf of the Service, rather than its own members.

"The Association has the status of a private company limited by guarantee. As such, it conforms to the requirements of company law and its affairs are governed by a Board of Directors.

"It is funded by a combination of a Home Office grant, contributions from each of the 44 Police Authorities, membership subscriptions and by the proceeds of its annual exhibition."

The Association of Chief Police Officers of England, Wales and Northern Ireland is registered with Companies House: company number 3344583.
There is also an Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland, company number SC310956.

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