[JURIST] Hundreds of conversations between lawyers and their incarcerated clients have been secretly taped by British police, according to a report in the UK Telegraph daily published Saturday. The tapings came to light after a a former police detective revealed that he had recorded conversations in 2005 and 2006 between Muslim Labour MP Sadiq Khan [official website] and Babar Ahmad, a childhood friend of Khan's held at Woodhill prison in Milton Keynes on terrorism charges. Justice Secretary Jack Straw [official profile] has launched an investigation into that bugging while denying that he or any other government ministers had any knowledge of the operation, although officials in his department apparently found out about the recording allegations two months ago.
The UK prison eavesdropping is believed to be the result of stepped-up security efforts following the 9/11 attacks on the US. An unidentified source told the Telegraph that initially the secret bugging scheme was used only at the Woodhill and Belmarsh prisons, but over the last year and half has been in operation across Britain. AP has more.