The names, places, events and other identifying factors in this next entry have been changed to protect the identity of both our target and our client.
Jobs don’t always go as planned. That is just the nature of the beast. Whilst you can have a good idea of what a target may or may not do, there are so many factors involved in each different type of Operation that you never really know what is going to happen. But all this aside, occasionally you seem to get everything right from start to finish and end the day wondering why all jobs can’t be as easy as that one?
Take yesterday for example. As mentioned in a previous entry, a client contacted us with fears that his wife may be cheating on him and thus a surveillance team were booked to follow her the next day.
The team arrived at the target location within about two minutes of each other (We always use more that one car in vehicular pursuits so that we can change positions frequently ensuring that the target doesn’t have the same car following her for any great length of time) and all three vehicles immediately slotted into what can only be described as perfect surveillance points: Just far enough away from the target vehicle so as not to arouse suspicion, but close enough to be able to move quickly when she chooses to leave her address.
One Agent then performed a radio drop to all three cars, ensuring that we can all stay in radio contact throughout the day and we wait in position for her to make a move. It seemed mere minutes following this that her front door opened and she swiftly made her way across the community parking area to her vehicle. At this point, an amateur agency would start vehicles and begin moving off towards her, but biding our time, we allow her to slowly turn her car around and make her way out of the modern housing estate she lives in. One by one behind her, from different estate roads and turn offs, our Agents fall in line behind her, just three more cars joining her for the morning commute to work.
And so this pursuit continued, just as smoothly as it had started, for the 62 miles covering everything from little B roads to country crossing motorways. In time, a route pattern began to emerge from her journey and it dawned on us that we may know where she was going. Call it intuition, or call it witchcraft (or Intel from the Client!) the feeling was strong enough to warrant one vehicle breaking free from the convey and forging ahead of her to meet us again in what would hopefully be her final destination.
The car forging ahead was mine.
Pulling into what I thought her destination may be (the main car park of a major northern landmark building) I took a moment to grab my Camera and attach a long range telephoto lens (I was using a Canon 400D with a Canon 100 – 400 L IS USM lens just in case you are interested!) and then moved into a position about 300 yards from where I thought her entrance point would be and set up my surveillance point.
Nothing. How far ahead of the main convey was I? Could it be that we had misjudged her destination? I tried my radio a couple of times, but whilst these are licensed professional Motorola’s I must have been too far away to get a signal through.
For twenty nail biting minutes I sat there, poised for action when a message started to crackle through my earpiece. “….approaching now..ca….conf…posito….” I was still too far away from the convey to get a proper signal but by virtue of the fact that I was hearing something from them, I meant they must have been getting closer. Suddenly, another car moved behind me and drove to an empty space on the other side of the carpark. Why move further away from the building when the space the car had occupied seemed fine? The car pulled up and I watched as a male driver emerged and leaned on the roof, watching the entrance just as I was, before checking his watch.
Another signal from the radio, this time not the victim of distance. “Agent A, can now confirm that we were correct, target is approaching your position now, please confirm copy over?” I pressed the button on my remote mic “Roger that, in position”
No sooner had I released it again than the target appeared, slowed her vehicle at the entrance and took a moment to look around. Behind her, I saw my fellow agents drive innocently past the entrance to take up distant positions from her. Catching sight of the man leaning on her car, she turned the wheel and headed off towards him. Parking next to him, she emerges and walks to him before they exchange the hugs and kisses exchanged by any other loving couple in a relationship. The only difference here? Her husband should be the man she is kissing.