‘The BBC is using laws designed to catch terrorists and organised crime networks to track down people who dodge the licence fee, it emerged yesterday.
The publicly-funded corporation uses the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), designed by the last Labour government to fight terrorism, to catch those who evade paying the £145.50 fee.
Now, however, its ability to use sweeping surveillance powers could be stopped by a new review announced yesterday by culture secretary Sajid Javid
Mr Javid’s independent inquiry into TV licence fee enforcement will examine the corporation’s use of covert surveillance operations on those it thinks have not paid the obligatory licence fee.
Although the BBC has admitted using the hugely controversial RIPA, it has refused to say in what way, when and how often.’