Based around a series of true events. The BBC’s current affairs programme ‘Panorama’ undertook a sixty minute documentary / exposé surrounding an elite government task force that went undercover in Sheffield over a period of twelve months. Their remit was to use the Proceeds of Crime Act to fill up the police federations coffers using illegally gained intelligence, on one hand overlooking – and in some cases encouraging – major criminal activity such as murder, kidnap and torture; whilst on the other, surreptitiously acquiring pre-bargained guilty pleas from defendants then reneging on deals, which culminated in some of the heaviest sentences ever handed out in the UK. But the programme was never aired.
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About James Durose-Rayner
James Durose-Rayner has over twenty years’ experience in journalism. He is a member of the Writer’s Guild and the editor of NATM, the UK’s leading specialist civil engineering journal. His writing has been featured in over 210 magazines and his debut indie-novel, S63: Made in Thurnscoe, published in 2001, received positive reviews. In 2015, I Am Sam (Clink Street Publishing) and itv Seven (New Generation Publishing) followed to more affirmative acclaim. Durose-Rayner currently divides his time between the UK and Cyprus.
Extract from U5 Undercover
From Episode 13: ‘Being in prison is a strange one, it really is. For some people prison is better than their life on the outside, for others it is much, much better. You think I’m kidding? Most criminals have crap lives, and they set their stall out as criminals because they know no better and that being the case they get what they can. If they get caught it’s a bit like the normal guy on the street getting his or her salary taxed or copping a parking fine. In reality – it’s not a great deal. Only the big, clever criminals are the ones that really suffer, and that is basically because they are deprived of their everyday luxuries such as money, alcohol, sex and of course their freedom. Everything else comes easy on the inside. Getting time to some can be like going on holiday but without the sun. Most people can do without alcohol that is unless you are a certified alcoholic. If you want sex, you knock one out, so that’s sorted – sort of. Freedom? What does the everyday criminal do with their freedom? I have known fucking thousands of them and all the majority want to do is sit in front of the television, and nowadays that’s covered as every cell comes equipped with one. You think I’m kidding? Being in prison is a bit like being on a shitty fully inclusive holiday with the only proviso is that you can’t nip out to the shops and you have to have a wank, that is unless you are a wufter and then it gets uprated to a four-star rave-up sort of like the Rio Park in Benidorm, but without the sun, bingo and the Legionnaires’ disease. Prison is a few things but it certainly isn’t a punishment.’
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