One of the most significant pieces of investigative journalism these last few years – published in the Sunday Herald newspaper – is to kick off a series on BBC Radio Scotland celebrating some of the country's best-known scoops.
In a new six-part series being presented by Donal MacIntyre, Neil MacKay speaks about how he exposed a double agent working for the British Army, operating at the very heart of the IRA
'Freddy' Scappaticci was thought to be the British government's most powerful weapon in Northern Ireland's 30-year 'dirty war' against the IRA and Sinn Fein, and is suspected of being allowed by the army's Force Research Unit (FRU) to take part in up to 40 murders.
'Scoop' is being aired on BBC Radio Scotland on Tuesday, between 11.30 and 12.00.
MacIntyre is himself a well-known investigative reporter. And his second guest is Heather Brooke – the investigative journalist behind the revelation of some outrageous expenses being claimed by MPs.
It is produced by BBC Radio Scotland's Philip Sime. He told allmediascotland.com: “This is genuinely one of the most interesting series I have worked on because, not only am I working with some of the best investigative journalists in the country, but we have actually managed to break down the processes in which each journalist has had to go through to break their story.
“We explore the characteristics of an investigative journalist and we hear how each of them nurture their contacts so that they can take a story from rumour to fact. we also get a true insight into what drives these investigative journalists to go that extra mile regardless if that means putting themselves in personal danger.”
The third programme features BBC Scotland's Sam Poling who went undercover to expose the criminals behind security firms and for troubles received death threats, had her windows smashed and had someone turn up at her front door with a bottle of acid.
Future programmes talk to Harry Evans, talking about his personal campaign as Sunday Times editor, to seek compensation for British thalidomide victims; Adam Holloway, talking about how he spent three months undercover as a homeless person on the streets of London; and Shelley Jofre on her investigation into the so-called non-addictive antidepressant drug, Seroxat.