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De Menezes family 'distressed' by spying claims

Accusations that Scotland Yard officers spied on the family of Jean Charles de Menezes has "exacerbated" the distress felt by the Brazilian's relatives - who were mourning the anniversary of his shooting yesterday.

It is shameful that the Metropolitan Police spied on the legitimate campaign activities of a grieving family who were simply trying to get the answers they deserved after their loved one was killed by police officers.

It begs the question - what exactly were the police spying for? We can only assume they were gathering information in an attempt to discredit the family's campaign for justice in order to deflect accountability for their own failings.

Hearing the news just one day after the anniversary of the shooting exacerbates the family's distress at a time when they are remembering Jean Charles and what he meant to them - a loving, caring 27-year-old, shot down in the prime of his life.

– A spokeswoman for the Jean Charles De Menezes Family Campaign

Claims Scotland Yard spied on de Menezes family

The family of Jean Charles de Menezes - who was shot dead by officers who mistook him for a suicide bomber in 2005 - are considering legal action against Scotland Yard after it was claimed the force spied on them.

Jean Charles de Menezes was shot dead by police in July 2005. Credit: PA / Family Handout

Scotland Yard is embroiled in a fresh scandal after claims officers gathered information about several grieving families involved in justice groups, including relatives of Mr de Menezes.

It is also alleged the force collected data on relatives of Cherry Groce, whose death sparked the Brixton riots, and Ricky Reel who died in mysterious circumstances in 1997.

The latest report on the force's secretive Special Demonstration Squad (SDS) will be published today. The unit, Special Branch and senior management at the Metropolitan Police are set for criticism.

Derbyshire Chief Constable Mick Creedon, who is leading the inquiry, will say that rules were flouted over what information should have been kept on record.

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