‘Bed of Lies’ is investigative journalism at its peak, telling the stories of Britain’s biggest scandals

True Crime December 13, 2021
Bed of Lies podcast art
Listen to ‘Bed of Lies’

Cara McGoogan has an insatiable hunger for the truth. And Britain’s biggest, most scandalous, most dangerous secrets are the perfect place to start. The Telegraph journalist has now brought us two seasons of “Bed of Lies,” capturing the full scope of these scandals and the impact it had on people’s lives.

Spies on the inside

The first season of “Bed of Lies” covers the undercover policing scandal that spanned decades and rocked the United Kingdom when what the Met Police had done came to light. From 1990 to 2010, policemen tricked dozens of women into relationships, posing as left-wing activists.

Without spoiling too much, as there are seven 40-minute episodes that capture this story better, these men changed their names and infiltrated the lives of women who were environmental activists, members of the Reclaim the Streets movements, and people who protested police brutality. Some women were top tier members, passionate and involved in these movements, while some were more casual members, enjoying the community and culture of the groups.

Some men dated and manipulated multiple women, while some cultivated romantic relationships with one woman for years, becoming an integral part of their lives and the organizations they supported. Some were forced into these roles by superiors, leaving behind wives and children while they spied on what turned out to be non-violent political groups.

For 18 months, McGoogan spoke with the women whose legal anonymity prevents the creations of a documentary or series of articles about them. While she wrote a special report about two of the women’s stories for the Telegraph’s news section, she decided the best and most intimate way to share these stories would be through a podcast. Over phone calls, FaceTimes, Zooms and all of the problems that go along with virtually recording a podcast, “Bed of Lies” came together in time for the Undercover Policing Inquiry, which may not publish its findings for years to come.

Dangerous blood

In the “Bed of Lies” second season, McGoogan tackles an even more dangerous secret in the form of one of the biggest medical disasters in history. Thousands of people were infected with HIV, hepatitis C, and other blood infections before 1991, with an unknown amount of people who have gone undiagnosed. McGoogan speaks with victims, doctors, the Big Pharma whistleblower, and more on the Infected Blood Inquiry, the story of thousands of people given hepatitis C through blood transfusions.

For an incredible dose of investigative reporting and a podcast that requires you listen through the final minutes to fully understand the details and scale of these scandals, “Bed of Lies” is our recommendation.

Listen to ‘Bed of Lies’

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