Combat 18 quickly gained a reputation following a number of violent acts targeted at immigrants and people from the political left. In 1993 Combat 18 published the magazine Redwatch, which, like the German neo-Nazi publication "Der Einblick", contained names and addresses of anti-racists, but also encouraged physical violence against those it listed.
Searchlight magazine, Red Action and other commentators on both the left and right spectrums of the media (including independent investigative journalist Larry O'Hara- see Turning up the Heat- MI5 after the cold War, Phoenix Press, 1994) have stated their belief that Combat 18 was the brainchild of the British secret service organisation MI5, being designed to discredit the BNP, whilst simultaneously acting as a 'honey-trap' to attract the most violent neo-Nazis in Britain into a single organisation, where they could be monitored. It is also believed that Combat 18 were used by MI5 to infiltrate Loyalist paramilitary groups in Northern Ireland. In 1998, the leader of Combat 18, Charlie Sargent, an alleged Special Branch informant, was sentenced to life imprisonment for the 1997 murder of another member of the group. This effectively ended the organisation, although a small group of people still use the name to describe themselves.
However, during April 1999, a professed Combat 18 supporter, 22 year old David Copeland, carried out a bombing campaign aimed at the black, Asian and gay communities in London. On the 23rd April 1999 a bomb exploded in Brixton and another detonated a week later in Brick Lane, East London. On the 30th April a third bombing at the pub The Admiral Duncan in Soho, caused three fatalities and injured over a hundred others.
The White Wolves are a C18 splinter group set up by Del O'Connor, who were initially believed to be linked to these attacks 1.
According to the German "Verfassungsschutz" (Governmental Department for the protection of the constitution) Combat 18 maintains divisions in USA, France, Sweden and Germany. At October 28, 2003 the German police made a razzia against the German members of the group 2.