Local authorities used powers designed to combat terrorism to pursue cases of dog fouling, fly tipping and breaching smoking bans, according to a new report. The civil liberties group Big Brother Watch said 9,607 surveillance operations had been carried out by councils, often for trivial offences.
The report showed 26 councils used the powers under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) to spy on suspected cases of dog fouling, and 7 authorities investigated suspected breaches of the smoking ban.
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