LONDON — The Guardian newspaper says that London's Metropolitan Police Service stole the identities of dozens of dead children to use as aliases for undercover officers, learning the infants' personal histories and even issuing fake passports in their names.
The allegation is another potential embarrassment for U.K. law enforcement's undercover program, which has previously been rocked by revelations that police spies had sex with their targets and fathered children with activists.
Police said in a statement Monday that they were investigating the complaint and "appreciate the concerns that have been raised." It said the "practice referred to in the complaint is not something that would currently be authorized."
The Guardian based its story on two detailed accounts provided by former undercover officers, whom it did not identify by name.
Also on HuffPost:
In this Jan. 27, 2013 photo, snake handler Saintilus Resilus, with his face painted red, talks to his assistants as they get ready to perform during pre-Lenten Carnival season in Petionville, Haiti. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
A couple sit by the Tagus river bank at sunset in Lisbon, Monday, Jan. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
A Hayward Gallery employee poses for photographers inside artist Anthony McCall's installation entitled 'You and I, Horizontal' at the gallery in London, Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2013. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
An elderly man walks holding an umbrella, during a snowfall, back dropped by a large poster in Bucharest, Romania, Monday, Jan. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
Debbie Neal of Palmyra, Maine, holds a piece of sea glass found on Orr's Island, Friday, Feb. 1, 2013, in Harpswell, Maine. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
In this Monday, Jan. 28, 2013 photo, a Buddha statue is silhouetted by the sun on the hill of Phmon Baseth, outskirt of Phnom Penh, Cambodia. (AP Photo/Heng Sinith)
Birds roost on the rifle portion of a Benjamin Milam statute at dusk, Monday, Jan. 28, 2013, in San Antonio, Texas. Milam was a leading figure in the Texas Revolution. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
In this photo taken on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013, a young Buddhist novice monk yawns while lining up to collect alms during an annual pagoda festival in Myanmar's ancient city of Bagan. (AP Photo/Khin Maung Win)
A man hangs onto the railing of North Curl Curl ocean pool after winds and rain battered Sydney last night producing large swell on January 29, 2013 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
Alain Robert known as "Spiderman," poses for a portrait from the roof of the Habana Libre hotel in Havana, Cuba, Friday, Feb. 1, 2013. Robert, from France, plans to climb the 27 floor hotel on Monday. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)