There are many considerations that need to factored in when conducting investigations and surveillance tasks both in the UK and overseas – expectation management, time constraints, communications, risk of compromise, understanding local laws and reacting to the unexpected, to name but a few.
Of course, detailed planning will assist in mitigating the risk but ultimately it is about the quality and experience of operators on the ground, having confidence in your team to make calculated and timely decision – ‘risk versus reward’ – achieve the aim of the task but not at the risk of compromising the overall operation and affecting the ‘bigger picture’.
All these elements and lessons identified, many of which are through our decades of expertise, were again put to the test on a recent tasking where a key client of ours needed us to conduct an investigation involving surveillance which started in the UK and took us to several European countries – ultimately the task was achieved. However, initially it was expected and assessed that it could be achieved in several days and in the UK. Ultimately as the task panned out and evolved it ended up taking considerably longer than initially expected with the key information required by the client not being confirmed until the third week, which took us to Spain (via France and Belgium).
Here at Valkyrie, operations are never black and white, and we always explain to our clients that there always needs to be a scope for unplanned eventualities. All that said there are worse places in the world to operate than a sunny Spain for a few days…….