To use all functions of this page, please activate cookies in your browser.
With an accout for my.chemeurope.com you can always see everything at a glance – and you can configure your own website and individual newsletter.
- My watch list
- My saved searches
- My saved topics
- My newsletter
Operation Antler (Porton Down investigation)
Additional recommended knowledge
The inquiries established that a number of the participants in the Service Volunteer Programme claimed to have been tricked into taking part in experiments. Some also claimed to have suffered long-term illness or injury as a result of the experiments.
The investigation covered the period from 1939 to 1989 and has lasted for five years. Its 13 members interviewed over 700 ex-servicemen or their relatives. The British Government provided the constabulary with an additional 870,000 pounds towards the costs.
At least 20,000 servicemen participated as volunteers in testing at Porton Down and records survive from 1942 onwards. The Second World War was the peak period for testing, and much of this concerned mustard gas, with as many as 8,000 volunteers being exposed. After 1945 testing shifted to nerve agents, and used around 3,400 volunteers (although they may not all have been exposed). In the 1960s smaller scale experiments took place with non-lethal agents such as LSD and glycollates, and more recently testing focused on countermeasures such as pyridostigmine bromide which is a pre-treatment for nerve agents.
The constabulary developed 25 cases for possible prosecution, of which 8 were forwarded to the Crown Prosecution Service. Subsequently, the CPS concluded that there would be no prosecutions of scientists involved in the tests, although the decision will be reviewed following the result of the inquest into the death of a volunteer, Ronald Maddison, in November 2004.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Operation_Antler_(Porton_Down_investigation)". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|