- Leaked documents suggest a British agent who was sent to Pakistan was psychologically unsuited to the task
LONDON (Agencies): The British security services sent a UK national to infiltrate a jihadist camp on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border despite concerns about his mental wellbeing, The Times reported on Saturday, citing leaked government documents. On his return to the UK, the mentally distressed spy killed his own child.
According to documents viewed by the British newspaper, the unnamed man was sent by MI6 to document a camp used by Taliban and Al-Qaeda extremists despite registering the worst possible score on a test designed to gauge emotional stability. The report claims that the spy also had a criminal record and had previously experienced a mental breakdown.
Upon his return to the UK after his assignment, it was recorded by MI6 that the man was in a state of extreme mental distress, according to the documents. He would later admit to killing his own child, who was found deceased with numerous severe injuries. He was arrested and charged with murder. A jury in a subsequent trial accepted that the spy had been suffering from mental illness but found him guilty of murder.
It is not known exactly when the spy was sent to the mountainous Waziristan region for his assignment, but The Times reported that he had been tasked with posing as a jihadist soldier. The area has been targeted for counter-insurgency operations by the Pakistani government, and has also been bombed by US forces.
While on the assignment, it’s claimed that he was forced to clean and bury dead and badly disfigured Taliban fighters. He witnessed the beheadings of a family accused of being US spies, and was also required to hold the decapitated head of a child.
It was noted in his debriefing that when the spy returned to the UK he had a significantly high stress level. He was given an all-expenses paid holiday but a doctor would later say that he was incapable of performing everyday tasks as a result of his psychological disorder, the report says.
According to the spy’s legal defense, his well-being and that of those around him was “entirely disregarded” by the UK security services. “He was an incredibly vulnerable man and his child was left in the most vulnerable of circumstances,” said Liam Kotrie of Mary Monson Solicitors in comments published on Saturday.