Undercover in the police, a whistleblower emerges with an archive of hate.
A POLICE whistleblower has come forward with a sickening archive of racist, sexist and homophobic material that he secretly collected over three decades undercover.
The vile cache of hardcore material covers a period in London from the Brixton riots in 1981 to the kidnap, rape and murder of Sarah Everard last year by a serving Metropolitan police officer.
In that time, the whistleblower quietly observed the toxic canteen culture as it migrated from offensive material posted on police station noticeboards to private groups of officers using encrypted social messaging apps.
David Eden, the whistleblower, said he became a sleeper in the Met because of a incident in 1982, when police colleagues were racist towards his Indian girlfriend.
The couple later married and have two children, but from that day on he has assiduously amassed an archive of hate that he secreted away, until now.
Eden went on to serve on the Diplomatic Protection Group before transferring to Hertfordshire police, from where he retired in 2010.
Since then, he was invited to join several police WhatsApp groups. What he saw profoundly affected him, he said. Serving and retired cops were sharing images more suited to a neo-Nazi cell.
But rather than disengage, Eden quietly logged the various posts. None of the members appeared to care that he didn’t contribute.
“Canteen culture is still rife; it’s covert but it’s just as bad as it’s always been and, in some respects, worse,” Eden told The Upsetter.
Serving and former protection officers are understood to have set up at least three private chat groups on Facebook and WhatsApp.
Eden said his WhatsApp group split from an original group that was set up in 2015.
The breakaway group was formed in August 2018 by a former officer on the Met’s Diplomatic Protection Group. He went on to work at the Home Office Border Agency dealing with immigration and is understood to still be serving in a law enforcement capacity.
This breakaway WhatsApp group remains active having shared 1635 images and 867 videos by this week.
Its members celebrated with this image six days after their police colleagues in the US had killed George Floyd on 25 May 2020.
On 11 March 2021, two days after PC Wayne Couzens, also a protection officer, was arrested for the kidnap, rape and murder of Sarah Everard, the WhatsApp group asked members if anyone knew him. This suggests that there are serving Met protection officers on the breakaway group.
On 12 March, the former protection officer who set it up responded to the murder by posting a mock ‘Police Signals’ image below. One recipient replied: “Sick bastard, there are only a few people I can send this too who will find it as funny as we do.”
Another responded with clapping and laughing emojis and the comment: “No fucking wokeness on here.”
The marriage of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle is also something that concerns this group. Other than this image below, they have shared one of the prince being roasted by his wife and Oprah Winfrey.
Eden has chosen to come forward on the day Met Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick quits the force after five years at the helm.
Her enforced resignation follows an array of scandals that have rocked public trust in policing.
Daniel Morgan, Stephen Lawrence, Mark Kennedy, Lord Brammal, Sarah Everard, Bianca Williams, Bibaa Henry, Nicole Smallman and most recently Child Q are all stains on Dick’s record.
Yet in her parting letter to Londoners she insists its a case of bad apples, not a rotting orchard.
Asked why he is coming out of the shadows, Eden told The Upsetter:
“There is only one reason. Since my very first week in the police service in 1982 until now I have seen a continued course of conduct and no change in the canteen culture, that was formerly very overt to now one of more stealth.
I am committed to challenging it and to being part of the solution. Fundamentally, regardless of all the efforts the police have claimed to have made, its repeatedly proved that we’ve made no headway at all. All they have ever paid is lip service and made the same disingenuous statements that lessons have been learned and things will change.
In fact, the only way to change things is to hit them very very head on. It’s got to be head on and there has to be consequences. The bottom line is I really want to hold these people to account. It would not be right to offer up a few sacrificial lambs to seemingly appease societal demand without any change. Because change comes from the top and not from the sacrificing of lower blue collar ranks.”
The departing Met commissioner presided over a culture of incompetence and cover up, said Doreen Lawrence recently.
Her verdict on Cressida Dick is supported by the Daniel Morgan Independent Panel’s report last year that found the Met was “institutionally corrupt” by putting its reputation above honesty and accountability to those it serves when things go wrong.
Dick refused to accept the conclusion, which sits next to the finding of the 1999 public inquiry into police failings over the murder of Doreen’s son, Stephen Lawrence, which concluded that the UK’s largest police force was “institutionally racist.”
Now, the murder of Sarah Everard has exposed the abuse of power and more police failings in the approach to violence against women and girls.
This, along with the scandal of undercover officers deceiving women involved in peaceful social justice campaigns into long term sexual relationships, raises important questions about institutional sexism and misogyny in UK policing.
Dick’s response, as ever, has been defensive. In her parting letter to Londoners she played the numbers game: that in a force of 34,084 officers out of a total of 44,000 staff there’s bound to be a few wrong ‘uns who let the side down.
Even if the bad apple theory was true, the Met is not equipped to deal with “rooting” them out. A report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary last month found its professional standards department to be “not fit for purpose.”
That is why David Eden said he will only give evidence to the two independent inquiries the Home Secretary has set up to look into “culture and standards” in the Met after the Everard scandal.
“Having made numerous representations over the years and being repeatedly ignored and marginalised, I have no confidence whatsoever in reporting any matters to the police service as it is my belief that they will only act in the interests of the police, in others words institutional protectionism,” said Eden.
The two new public inquiries followed revelations that Everard’s killer was known to police colleagues as “the rapist” yet managed to transfer from the Civil Nuclear Constabulary to the Met’s Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection unit in 2020.
Another trigger for setting up the public inquiries was the revelation that officers at Charing Cross police station in central London had joked on WhatsApp about raping women and killing black children.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan was angry that nine of the officers kept their jobs while two were promoted and withdrew his support for Dick, who announced her resignation on 11 February.
Separately, three Met officers face a trial in July after they denied sharing “grossly offensive” social media messages with Couzens.
The WhatsApp group revealed today in The Upsetter is a separate one.
Eden, who served on the Diplomatic Protection Group from 1988 to 1995, can testify that Couzens inherited a culture of sexism, homophobia, bullying and misogyny.
It is all laid out in a book, Nut & Gut, that he self-published last year and which details historic and contemporary incidents of racism, sexism, homophobia and corruption in the police service.
Female officers were called PLONKS – Police Lady of No Knowledge – and divided into “lesbians, fuckable, married and sort of off limits or one of the lads,” he said.
Today’s racism, sexism and homophobia “operates in stealth mode” and is found in small groups of usually white male officers in private phone chats and seemingly seething with rage about diversity initiatives, he believes.
Eden says some members of the WhatsApp group left or deleted messages after Everard’s murder. But a hardcore remained and went on to share images celebrating domestic violence, like this:
Alternatively, they turned their resentment towards the global Black Lives Matter movement, which developed in response to the George Floyd killing.
Well before his death at the hands of a Minneapolis cop, the WhatsApp group in the UK was posting racist images such as this:
And one month after Floyd was killed this was shared:
Then two days after BLM activist Sasha Johnson was shot in the head at a party in south London, this image was posted on 25 May 2021.
Not even the pandemic escaped their racism. This mock government poster was doing the rounds in October 2020, when the UK death toll was rising and had hit front line workers from minority ethnic groups very hard:
Dave Eden’s father was a policeman in the north and south of England. As soon as he was eligible, Eden left Sheffield and joined the Met in 1982.
Relations with the black and Asian communities in London were in tatters after the Southall riots in 1979 and the Brixton riots two years later that led to the landmark Scarman report into policing.
“I wanted to help society,” says Eden but he soon came up against police canteen culture of racism, sexism, homophobia and bullying.
“[On joining] I had neither the courage to challenge what I knew to be wrong nor the resilience to deal with the consequences of doing so. I simply stood in silent acquiescence, comforting myself that I wasn’t personally guilty,” he said.
But that changed on his first posting to Ealing police station in west London. He had fallen in love with an Indian girl, which he didn’t hide from his colleagues.
As the Christmas office party approached, Eden recalled being take aside and told his girlfriend was not welcome because the lads didn’t want a “Paki” there.
This incident, he says, sent him on a secret personal mission to, from then on, document how senior officers tolerated a toxic canteen culture that protected racists and misogynists while punishing victims and whistleblowers.
“If I wanted to survive in the police then I needed to embrace the predominant canteen culture and either become bellicose and opinionated or get bullied,” he said.
He chose the former, while secreting away notes of incidents of racism and corruption that he witnessed.
He says he inherited from his mother “the strengths of obsessive cleanliness, a need for order and a compulsion for recording just about everything that happens on a daily basis.”
Whistleblowing was not the way forward. Eden had seen what happened to those officers who called out corruption, bullying and racism. They were moved and their new colleagues told “to make [their] life hell”.
He said: “I suppose I spent the next 40 years living in a permanent state of rage.”
In 1988, Eden moved to the Diplomatic Protection Group (DPG) – a plum posting with lots of down time, overtime pay and opportunities to be entrepreneurial.
He laughs when journalists apply the word elite to the DPG. The Group he joined was full of gun nuts, bike nuts (like him) and officers doing a lot of sitting around watching either Yes Minister or porn.
All the offensive posts put up in noticeboards he would eventually snaffle or photocopy and file in plastic covers that The Upsetter can attest are now dog-eared and yellowing.
Notices like this:
Eden’s time monitoring police WhatsApp groups convinces him that canteen culture has also turned inwards, partly because the public has mobile phones and police now routinely wear body cameras.
“It now operates in stealth mode and the vitriol towards [minority] colleagues is at an all time high,” he said. “Before, women in the police were seen as only getting somewhere because of who they shagged. Now racially and other diverse officers are seen as only getting where they did because they are black or a lesbian. These views are now expressed in small chat groups of mainly male police, who are angry and together they form a majority.”
Eden says the “lip service” paid to diversity and poorly implemented positive discrimination postings have contributed to this resentment. “No rose tinted glasses here. Some people are given jobs because they fill the diversity critieria not because they are qualified for the posting.”
There is, however, no excuse, no gallows humour defence, for the majority of the posts he is seeing in the police chat groups, he makes clear.
It is racist and deeply concerning when some of those people sharing these posts “are still working in the same [law enforcement] environment,” he said.
One of whom is understood to be a serving officer working at an airport and posted this:
Eden has not stayed silent during his time in the Met or when he transferred to Hertfordshire police, where he was a custody sergeant and later responsible for investigating serious traffic accidents.
The Upsetter has known Eden for 13 years and in that time he has called out corruption.
The first occasion was over a Met cover up of corruption surrounding the activities of Special Constable Nisha Patel Nasri, who was running a brothel with her husband, who later had her killed.
Eden internally reported that the couple had told him they had someone senior in Scotland Yard looking after them. An equally brave Met civilian investigator confirmed Eden’s story and said she was being prevented from looking into the corruption.
Then there was the traffic unit that was “engineering” arrests of young black men and other civilians to meet performance targets. The officer with the most arrests at the end of every week was given the ‘Bang It Out’ Cup and the loser given the ‘Underperforming Pig’.
When Eden turned 40, some twenty years ago, he got a tattoo of Che Guevara on his arm. He says he did it to piss off police colleagues and also the Americans he met while on vacation with his wife in the Caribbean.
“The Yanks would complain when they saw who it was and I would respond, ‘Bastards! They told me it was Bob Marley.’”
Eden is only willing to speak to the upcoming public inquiries and had secreted his evidence in case the home he now shares with his profoundly disabled stepson is raided by the Met.
Before she departed today, Cressida Dick told journalists:
“I guess when I sit there, after I have left, I will look back and I will analyse further, what happened potentially, what I could have done or what others could have done in particular circumstances.
But I’m really proud of what the Met has achieved in this time. I think London should know that it has a fantastic police service, a world-leading police service that people from all over the world come to see, that has improved.
I joined 40 years ago, and in so many respects it’s much more diverse, much more professional, bigger. And it is very determined to improve even further, and it will do.
I believe during my commissionership you have seen a real opening up of the Met. We are much more transparent, we are much closer to our public, and we have been seeking to root out the people who have let London down or may let London down, those people who can’t live up to the professional standards that London would expect of its police service.”
Meanwhile, the day after she announced her resignation, having lost the confidence of London mayor, Sadiq Khan, the WhatApp group of serving and retired police officers posted this: