Anarchists plot to wreck Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding celebration
The Standard has spoken exclusively to a key organiser who revealed details of so-called “black bloc” tactics used by anarchists to evade police.
He spoke after Scotland Yard released images of anarchists changing clothes and removing Sim cards from mobile phones to avoid being identified during last month’s TUC march in central London, in which The Ritz and Fortnum and Masons were among buildings targeted in breakaway violence and 200 arrests were made.
The Met plans to use stop-and-search powers and snatch squads to prevent trouble at the wedding on April 29. “We will not tolerate troublemakers who set out with the sole intention of causing disorder and committing crime,” said a police spokeswoman. “Officers will respond swiftly to anyone seeking to mar this day of national celebration”
The man calling himself an anarchist organiser spoke to the Standard on condition of anonymity. The father of two proudly displayed the contents of the backpack he says he takes on
violent protests. It contained a masonry hammer for smashing plate glass and reinforced windows, a catapult for firing steel ball-bearings at windows and police horses, and an S10 British Army-issue gas mask.
The activist said he always carries high-impact protective sunglasses, a helmet, head-torch and surgical gloves. He revealed that anarchists often carry extra Sim cards and pay-as-you-go phones to avoid detection.
“Black bloc” tactics were first seen during the Eighties and are now linked to an international network of hardline anarchist groups. Rioters dress in black from head to toe and cover their faces with scarves and balaclavas in a bid to appear as one unidentifiable mass.
After causing disorder they change into casual clothes before mingling with non-violent protesters or street crowds to evade capture. The 39-year-old “black bloc” member, who lives in south London, claims groups have spent months plotting how they are going to disrupt Prince William and Kate Middleton‘s big day.
He said: “Anything is possible. Wait and see… but think rooftop occupations with banners, shop occupations and much more. We’re expecting 10,000 to 15,000 in total. About 10 per cent of that will be hardcore anarchists.
“The senior officers are going to use terror laws but that won’t stop the trouble. We train. How to break a ‘kettle’. Some of us do martial arts.
“We’ve got to expect that the police will make it complete lockdown, people will be barred, arrested beforehand and snatch squads will be deployed.”
The man, who works as a bricklayer earning between £400 and £700 a week, said he was among hundreds of activists who went on the rampage through central London during the TUC’s March for the Alternative. “We operate in a brick system, which is an Army plan.
“Part of that is also the buddy system. Every activist is partnered up with a buddy. We work in pairs, a bit like the police and the Territorial Support Group [riot police]. Then when two pairs of buddies come together it’s called an affinity group. Then when one or more affinity groups come together they form a brick.”
He told how his role during the TUC march had been to push police officers away violently as they attempted to arrest protesters.
The activist, who is known to police after causing trouble at a number of high-profile marches across the UK, claimed he joined anti-cuts protests because one of his children is receiving the Education Maintenance Allowance and another is about to go to university.
He described the array of weapons used during violent marches. “I’ve taken a catapult out on one action,” he said. “It will put a window in with a ball-bearing. It’s very useful against mounted police but I must stress that’s more about defence than offence.
“I bought smoke grenades in an ex-Army shop and flares in a marine shop. If someone is arrested you don’t think twice about getting in there and forcing them free of the police.”