Line Of Duty series 5 explainer: episode 5 questions answered

Major spoilers ahead as we fill in some of the background info on the latest Line Of Duty series 5 episode...

If you have lingering questions after the latest Line Of Duty series five episode, then please step this way for our weekly briefing… 

So, Mark Moffatt was definitely framing Ted with that 50k then?

Yes. Because we saw him hand the cash over to Ted, but then he denied it, having made sure his fingerprints didn’t appear on the money.

The real question is – who is Moffatt working for? Not Lisa McQueen, because if she had used Moffatt to frame Ted, she’d have known that Ted wasn’t User 2972 when he arrived at the club. Is Moffatt acting on orders from the real User 2972, or somebody else who wants Ted off the scene?

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Why is Gill Biggeloe so keen on Ted retiring?

To avoid an embarrassing end to a distinguished career, or so she says. If Ted retired, somebody else would have to take on responsibility for the cock-up that is Operation Pear Tree, and he wouldn’t have to face disciplinary procedures. Speculation ahead: she may have another reason for wanting Ted out of this investigation. Is AC-12 getting too close to unveiling senior corrupt officers that she has an interest in protecting?

Why did Ted leave 50k in cash out on his hotel room bedside table?

He was distracted, alright? Poor Ted hasn’t been making the cleverest decisions of late. Also, the Edge Park Hotel probably has very trustworthy cleaners/no safes.

What were AC-12 trying to achieve by impersonating User 2972 on the computer?

Trying to get information that would lead to the OCG’s bosses, possibly including corrupt senior officers.

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Why were Jackie Laverty’s body parts dumped with Corbett’s corpse?

Either to kill two birds with one stone (the OCG had forgotten all about having left Jackie’s body in the freezer, and with Tony Gates long dead, there was no point keeping it for blackmail) or as a signature, so the police would know that it the OCG were definitely the ones behind Corbett’s murder (seeing as the police were aware of their connection to Jackie Laverty).

If the tip-off about Corbett came from Blackthorn Prison, must it have been Ted who told Lee Banks?

Not necessarily. Though Lee Banks was identified in the episode as the only active member of the OCG in Blackthorn prison, several previous members are known to have been locked up there, including corrupt series four solicitor Jimmy Lakewell and bent Vice Squad copper Manish Prasad. There’s Vihan Malhotra too. If they’re still there, the tip-off could have come from any of them.

Why did Ted go to visit Lee Banks at Blackthorn Prison then?

As he said – to gain information about the OCG in preparation for his renegade undercover op. He learned from Banks that Corbett and McQueen were running the unit, which enabled him to look more like User 2972/H while he was playing the role.

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What happened to John Corbett’s mum?

In 1989, Anne-Marie Gillis was kidnapped, tortured and executed by a Belfast paramilitary group, who suspected her of being a police informant. Her remains weren’t found until 2001 and her case remains unsolved.

What has Ted got to do with John Corbett’s mum?

If Anne-Marie Gillis was a police informant, there’s a chance she could have been informing Ted and he failed to protect her from criminal repercussions? All we know is that the loyalist paramilitary pipe bomb that killed Ted’s best friend and severely injured him exploded shortly after Gillis disappeared, indicating a possible connection between the two events.

Why does Decker Avenue Station have a familiar ring to it?

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Because it’s the name of one of the police precincts in Steven Bochco’s acclaimed US crime series Hill Street Blues, one of several nods made by Jed Mercurio to Bochco’s show. Those aren’t the only nods to classic cop shows in Line Of Duty, Kate and Steve’s radio call signs 3-7 and 4-5 are those of The Professionals’ Bodie and Doyle.

What’s wrong with Steve?

He seems to be impotent, which could be a result of the serious injuries sustained in the previous series when a member of the OCG attacked him with a baseball bat and pushed him down a flight of stairs, or a result of all the painkillers those injuries are now causing him to guzzle, or stress, or some combination of all three. Talk to your GP, Steve, fella.


How did Kate and Steve locate Ted and the OCG at the warehouses where the Eastfield loot was being stored?

They tracked the location of Miroslav’s burner phone, identifying it by cross-referencing numbers known to have been contacted by John Corbett on his burner phone.

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Is it significant that Ted and John Corbett were repeatedly seen drinking the same drink – neat whiskey – and even sitting in what looked like the same seat in the club?

The drink could have been an early visual hint that Corbett and Ted were linked through their Belfast history. It’s hopefully not foreshadowing that both are coppers whose undercover both missions went awry and ended… badly.

Line Of Duty’s series five finale airs on Sunday the 5th of May at 9pm on BBC One.