Political espionage

Detectives spied on dozens of politicians and businessmen

Socialist leaders Montilla and Bono on list of those watched by controversial Método 3 agency

Método 3, the now-defunct private detective agency whose owner is facing his own investigation by a Barcelona judge, spied on dozens of government agencies, political parties, politicians, businessmen, media outlets and lawyers over the past 10 years, court records show.

The private detectives used various methods to collect information for their clients, including newspaper clippings, data searches for work records and telephone numbers, even tailing people on certain occasions.

Método 3, which was closed earlier this year, was thrust into the spotlight when it was discovered that detectives had recorded a lunch conversation in 2010 between Alicia Sánchez-Camacho, the head of the Popular Party in Catalonia (PPC), and Victoria Álvarez, the former girlfriend of one of the sons of former regional premier Jordi Pujol. Álvarez spoke to Sánchez-Camacho about reported money-laundering activities by her ex-boyfriend, Jordi Pujol Ferrusola.

Francisco Marco, the former owner of Método 3, is under investigation for possibly breaking Spanish law regarding the revelation of secrets. Sánchez-Camacho pressed charges against him last month.

But court records show that Método 3 had a wide-range of clients throughout the years, including the PPC, and conducted investigations on Socialist leaders José María Barreda, José Bono and José Montilla.

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