Delivery partner CLM to call in security company to gather intelligence and vet site workers

Construction workers on Olympic projects are to be screened for possible terrorist links under an extensive security operation, Building has learned.

The Olympic Delivery Authority is understood to be on the verge of tendering a security contract for intelligence gathering and background checks on workers.

One of the principal aims of the security checks is to prevent a worker incorporating a bomb into the structure of a building.

The checks are aimed at uncovering links to terrorist organisations that may not be picked up by standard criminal record checks.

The vetting of workers has been given additional urgency by the disclosure that the son of Abu Hamza, the jailed Muslim cleric, was a labourer on London Underground. Mohammed Kamel Mostafa, who has served a prison sentence in Yemen for plotting attacks on US and British targets, was not picked up by criminal records checks as he does not have convictions in this country.

Counter-terrorism firm Control Risks is a frontrunner to carry out the work, in conjunction with police and security services. The security consultant worked on the London bid as part of CLM, the delivery partner for the Games.

Nigel Churton, the chief executive of Control Risks, served for 11 years as an officer in the British Army. He specialised in intelligence and counter-terrorism.

Gary Sullivan, the managing director of logistics and security firm Wilson James, said intelligence operations such as background checking would play a key part in site security.

He said: “The security for the Olympic Park will largely be intelligence-led.” He added that this would take precedence over use of technologies such as biometrics, as they would not expose people unless they had a criminal record.

Sullivan said that the measures would affect the Olympic budget, but would not seriously increase costs.

A spokesperson for CLM said: “The requirements for screening have not been fully specified, nor have any contracts been let.”