SNP 'captured and controlled' by British agents, claims former SNP MSP

The SNP has been ‘captured and controlled’ by British agents, claims former Nationalist MSP as he even blames spooks for the party’s unpopular policies

  • Ex-SNP MSP Campbell Martin ridiculed for claims spies control Scottish Gov

A former Nationalist MSP was ridiculed last night after he claimed that British spies had ‘captured and controlled’ the Scottish Government after infiltrating the SNP.

Campbell Martin alleged that security service ‘assets’ have risen through the party ranks to positions where they can influence policy.

The 63-year-old claimed the SNP’s focus on gender policies is being pushed by agents of the British state in a bid to make the party unelectable and discredit the idea of breaking up the Union.

Other senior SNP figures have also stated they believe MI5 has used secret agents to monitor the party.

But the wild conspiracy theory was roundly mocked as critics insisted the SNP did not need any outside help in ‘imploding’.

Suspicions: Campbell Martin, seen while still an SNP MSP in 2004

‘Betrayed’: Alex Neil

Convinced: Jim Sillars

Writing on a pro-independence website this week, Mr Martin said: ‘The SNP is completely compromised. It has been captured and controlled by the British state.

‘The difference between those early days of the Scottish parliament and today is that the British state assets in the SNP have, over the intervening years, risen through the ranks and now hold senior positions that have allowed them to influence party policies and direction, such as adopting a lack of urgency in delivering independence.’

He added: ‘You have to hand it to the British state, it has played a blinder: today’s SNP is so corrupted by British agents that it has sidelined independence and embraced gender policies that make the party unelectable.’

Mr Martin was elected as a Nationalist MSP in 2003 but was suspended a year later after he criticised John Swinney’s leadership of the party. He is a supporter of former First Minister Alex Salmond.

In an attempt to back up his view, Mr Martin pointed out that the secret service had spies in the IRA and National Union of Miners.

He said: ‘It would be more extraordinary if they ignored the SNP, which is a party which supposedly wants to break up the British state.

‘If they hadn’t infiltrated that organisation there would be something far wrong.’

Broadcaster Andrew Neil was quick to ridicule the claims on social media.

He wrote: ‘Former SNP MSP blames this year’s Scot Nat implosion on British spooks who have supposedly infiltrated the party right up to cabinet level?

‘Not sure MI5 that good (though it is headed by a Scot and University of Glasgow graduate). Nor do I think the new First Minister and his supporters really needed any help to implode his party.’

In reference to a £110,000 motorhome seized by police as part of their probe into SNP finances, Mr Neil added: ‘Was that unused SNP camper van really an MI5 mobile listening post? I think we should be told.’

Sharing an image of Humza Yousaf mocked up to look like a stereotypical spy, Blair McDougall, who ran the campaign to keep Scotland in the Union, said: ‘As a former MSP says the SNP is now controlled by MI5 sleepers, it’s a good day to ask: are Humza Yousaf’s London handlers behind the failure to prepare a basic economic case for leaving the UK?’

However, former SNP deputy leader Jim Sillars said he also believes the party has British agents within it.

He told The Times: ‘There were a couple of people in the party who I was absolutely certain were MI5 plants. There is nothing we can do about it. We are a constitutional national organisation and, therefore, we never set up a counter-intelligence department within the party.’

Broadcaster Andrew Neil was quick to ridicule the claims on social media. He wrote: ‘Former SNP MSP blames this year’s Scot Nat implosion on British spooks who have supposedly infiltrated the party right up to cabinet level?’

The latest claims come after government documents published by the National Archives last week revealed that the students who stole the Stone of Destiny from Westminster Abbey in 1950 were given up by moles within the nationalist movement.

Ex-Scottish Government minister Alex Neil said he agrees with Mr Sillars and Mr Martin. He told The Times: ‘If I were the First Minister I would be operating on the assumption that there will be people who are out to “do us in” from inside the organisation.

‘Who they are, who employs them, what they are actually doing, what positions they hold and how many there are, we just don’t know.’

He added: ‘I have no doubt that in decades to come, when official secrets are disclosed, it will emerge that the people who took back the Stone of Destiny were not the only ones who were betrayed by people they thought were loyal to the cause.’

The Stone of Destiny was the seat upon which Scotland’s monarchs were crowned in ancient times and a potent symbol of the nation’s sovereignty.

It was seized by Edward I, the King of England, in 1296 and taken to London – where it was incorporated into a new royal throne.

There it remained until Christmas Day 1950, when four Glasgow University students broke into the abbey and prised it free.

Documents giving details of the hunt for the gang of four were kept under wraps for more than 70 years but have now been declassified and made available by the National Archives.

They show that after several weeks without a successful lead, the Metropolitan Police received a tip-off from people within the nationalist movement.

The Home Office, which is responsible for running the UK’s intelligence services, has a longstanding policy of not commenting on operational matters.

Spies, lies and rigged votes… some love a conspiracy


Conspiracy theories about British agents acting against the SNP have been raised in the past by some sections within the Nationalist movement.

Activists claimed that the 2014 independence referendum was rigged, and that MI5 had played a role.

A pamphlet sold at local branches claimed MI5 and a Labour activist ‘rigged’ the result with thousands of fake No ballots. Promoted by the SNP’s Dunoon branch, it said: ‘MI5 can produce the required number of ballot papers, of the right paper with the right local authority stamp… even the correct signature from the computer image.

‘All they need to do then is get their own staff to deliver the papers to the correct post boxes in the correct areas of Scotland, and bingo, the job is done.’

Earlier this year, an unnamed MP was quoted in a pro-independence newspaper claiming that MI5 may have been behind the arrest of the party’s former chief executive Peter Murrell.

The MP said: ‘I think in Scotland there is a feeling that there is some involvement by MI5 or Unionist governments just because the sheer scale of it is just outrageous.’

Although they insisted they were ‘not a great conspiracy theorist’, the MP claimed the investigation was ‘probably a misjudgement’ by Police Scotland and that some in the party view it as a conspiracy.

Scottish Conservative chairman Craig Hoy said: ‘We know Nationalists like to blame Westminster for everything but even by their standards this is a breath-taking and bonkers suggestion.

‘This MP actually admits that they don’t buy this ludicrous conspiracy theory. So why on earth are they pandering to tinfoil hat-wearing crackpots among their supporters, rather than questioning the genuinely murky business in the higher reaches of their own party?’

Nicola Sturgeon’s father, Robin Sturgeon, also shared a social media message claiming the probe was a plot against the SNP.

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