Here in Brazil we call people like this "puxa-saco" (bag dragger?), meaning someone who invariably sides with and supports their bosses, often going against co-workers or employees in general, in an attempt to get recognition, be promoted, whatever. Often the boss doesn't trust them, but keeps them around as a self-maintained policing agent. Often they are quickly fired too.
Today I had an experience with a person like this. I went to see a person who happens to own a property around here and they were there, but sleeping. All I wanted to do was to ask for permission to enter the property and take close-up pictures from some beautiful trees inside the property.
I was received by an employee and he was extremely concerned about my presence there and my wanting to take photos therein. He talked and acted as if it was a mortal sin to ask that and even told me his boss would call the police if he saw anyone inside the property... Except that I was going there specifically to ask for permission.
I bet his boss wouldn't be half as worried as he was, at most he would deny me permission to enter the property, which is fine.
So that's what I wanted to know. Employees who act like that, what would you call them in English?
First, thanks for all the answers so far. I haven't decided yet which is better but all people who answered my question so far gave valuable answers.
It seems, however, that some people need more context on what I said, as they inferred stuff I did not write, or somehow understood me in a way I did not intend to be perceived.
The property lay by the road, at the town's entrance. There are no walls, only a barbed wire fence around the pasture, and walking further, alongside the road, there's an alley that leads into the property.
Down that alley there are some stables and a house somewhere behind them.
The owner sells some goods he produces there, like milk and manure, a lad well known to the city folks.
There was no reason for the employee to be concerned. I met him as he was walking the alley up and out the property. As I see him I walk it down, but no further than he himself has walked up, then I stop, clearly signalling I wait him so we can talk.
As he gets near me he says nothing, so I say hi and politely ask him over his boss' whereabouts. He looked calm, on an okay mood until then, but immediately frowns upon me and tells me upfront that his boss was sleeping, as if it was personal to him that his boss not be disturbed. That struck me as odd though, it was 3 in the noon and the day was bright, who sleeps by then!?
Not impossible, but not customary either...
He proceeds to ask me why I want to see him, acting passive aggressively already, while I just don't get why.
I tell him why, he gets even more so... the most awkward!
Soon I'm talking to this pretentious mediator between a plebeian and some sort of king. If I could describe his stance with one word, it's unnecessary...
To make it all the more comic, the guy's wearing old work outfits, full of manure and dirt, the vision of an unimpressive rural worker. Totally okay, don't get me wrong, except that he acts as if he's the property manager and instead of a small farm, the whole matter is about a mansion or a castle...
At that moment I wished I had his boss walking up the alley instead, I sure would have had a better conversation...
I think the more info I add, the harder it's getting for readers to understand the context.
Bear in mind that when one experiences a situation, there are emotional and non-verbal cues that can't be transmitted in full via a written account. I was there and know the undertones of the situation. I felt offended by someone to whom I acted kind and respectful. I bet there's a ton of people around who'd just hop over the fence and take the photos right away.
Now, I said something about the lad's clothes and may have gotten misinterpreted. There's nothing wrong with working in farms and getting dirty. I myself work in the farms during the rainy seasons, and I get home just as dirty. That's a common job around here, the town has only 4 thousand inhabitants and most of us live off rural activities, my family included. My father, for instance, produces and sells vegetables.
The problem I was trying to portray is that I felt disgusted by the lad's attitude. Looking at him made me feel even more disgusted... "Who the hell does he think he is?" was my thought. I went there to ask for permission, exactly because I didn't want to be invasive, trespassing someone else's property. I know his boss is cool. During weekdays, people walk down that alley to buy cabbages, milk and such from him. The thing is, it was saturday, and I was going to take photos, so that might bother the owner, so let me not do that and ask what his thoughts are first, I thought.
Then as soon as that man learns what my purposes are, immediately frowns at me and gets pretentious, conceited, curt and unfriendly, talking in a kind of angry, agressive undertonte and purporting himself to be great mediator between a presumed idiot who wants to take photos from trees (because who does these silly things anyway?) and the most important personality in the town.
That's how it felt. It was uncomfortable, I felt offended and I didn't understand the need for him to act like that towards me.
As I got home I was still thinking about that weirdo. I was not resented, but thought to myself: "That was a great puxa-saco I met there". Immediately afterwards I thought it might be exciting to know what word might be like "puxa-saco" in English. So I turned the computer on and asked this question...
I hope I was clear this time around.