Thursday, 26 March 2015

Lib Dem councillor and PPC arrested for child sex offences

A Lib Dem councillor and PPC in Ashfield has been arrested over accusations of child sex abuse.

Cllr Jason Zadrozny was arrested by Nottinghamshire Police to answer allegations of "buggery and gross indecency with a male under 16 between September 2003 and April 2004, sexual activity with a child between May 2004 and December 2007 and an allegation of meeting a child under 16 following sexual grooming from May 2004 and December 2007".

Zadrozny has resigned as a PPC and been suspended by the Liberal Democrats.

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Macclesfield Conservative Councillor to stand trial for assault next week

A Conservative councillor in Macclesfield is standing trial on Monday for assault.

Cllr Damien Druce was arrested in January and appeared before magistrates in February where he pleaded not guilty. He has been suspended by the Conservative Party.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Former Labour chairman Harriet Yeo replaces Janice Atkinson in Folkestone & Hythe

Janice Atkinson has been replaced with former Labour Party chairman, Harriet Yeo, as UKIP PPC for Folkestone & Hythe.

Atkinson has been expelled from the party along with her chief of staff over a dodgy expense claim.

Yeo was chairman of the Labour Party between 2012-13, a member of the Labour Party's national executive and Treasurer and President of the Transport Salaried Staffs' Association (TSSA) trade union. She resigned from the Labour Party earlier this year and announced her support for UKIP but stopped short of joining the party. She has now joined the party and will contest the Folkestone & Hythe seat for UKIP.

Janice Atkinson expelled over dodgy expense claim

Janice Atkinson and her chief of staff, Christine Hewitt, have been expelled from the party over a secret recording showing Hewitt haggling with a restaurant for a higher bill to make a fraudulent expenses claim.

MEPs aren't allowed to claim expenses for food so it's either a claim by her staff or Atkinson was claiming through the EFDD group. It's unlikely that Atkinson has been expelled because her staff were doing something behind her back so presumably it's the latter.

The following statement has been released:
Janice Atkinson MEP and Christine Hewitt (assistant to Janice Atkinson) have been found to have brought the party into disrepute. As a result they have been expelled from UK Independence Party. They have 14 days to appeal.

This means that Ms Atkinson no longer represents UKIP in the European Parliament and she will no longer be our prospective parliamentary candidate for Folkestone and Hythe.

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Tory PPC for Dudley North tries to recruit EDL to campaign for him

The Conservative candidate for Dudley North, Afzal Amin, has been suspended after trying to get the EDL to fake a protest in Dudley and break election law by paying EDL supporters to campaign for him.

Amin met with the leader of the EDL, Steve Eddowes and former leader Tommy Robinson on several occasions. During these meetings he asked them to announce a protest in Dudley that would never happen so that he could claim to have convinced them to back down and look good to voters. He also said he wanted to pay Tommy Robinson to get EDL supporters to campaign for him which is illegal.

The prospect of another EDL protest so soon after the previous one which resulted in a number of arrests of far left thugs from Unite Against Fascism would have inflamed racial tensions and spread fear far beyond Dudley. Amin clearly gives no thought to the effects of his dishonest scaremongering and only cares about winning the election, even if he has to break the law in the process.

Dudley North is a key marginal currently held by Labour's Ian Austin MP and a UKIP target seat. Polls show that UKIP's Bill Etheridge MEP is drawing level with Austin with the Tories a distant, vote-splitting third. They had very little chance of winning Dudley North before this story, they won't even be coming close now. The best thing the Conservatives can do to prevent Labour winning is sack Amin and not bother replacing him because a vote for the Conservatives in Dudley North is a vote for Ian Austin and Ed Miliband.

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Former Labour mayor and councillor jailed for theft and fraud

The former Labour mayor of North Lincolnshire has been given a three and a half year prison sentence for defrauding a Yemeni man.

Jawaid Ishaq was a Labour councillor for 30 years, the Labour mayor of Sunderland and the Labour mayor of North Lincolnshire. He faked a power of attorney and helped himself to shares and bank accounts owned by Ali Sultan, defrauding him of £66k. He was found guilty of 9 charges of fraud and one of theft and cleared of a further 5 charges of fraud and another of theft.

Derby Labour attack UKIP councillor for missing meeting after suffering stroke

The Labour Party in Derby are putting out a leaflet claiming credit for UKIP's hard work tackling parking problems Chaddesden and criticising the UKIP councillor who's actually been doing the work for not attending a meeting when he was recovering from a stroke.

UKIP councillor, Bill Wright, has been visiting shops on Sussex Circus and talking to council officers to get action on parking problems. He missed a recent meeting regarding the parking issues after suffering from a stroke but it seems that isn't a valid excuse for the dirty tricks department of the local Labour Party.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Former Lib Dem councillor "acting like a predatory paedophile"

A Lib Dem ex-councillor has been given a 2 year suspended sentence for child sex offences.

Bob Thompson was described as "acting like a predatory paedophile" by the judge who said he couldn't give him a sex offender treatment programme because he refused to accept that he had done anything wrong. He gave him a two year prison sentence suspended for two years because of his ill health.

We already know that Thompson likes them young after marrying a Gambian woman half his age in 2008. He met his wife Fatou when he was 52 and she was 26 and living in a hut with her young daughter. He converted to Islam and married her within a week and then spent a year getting her a visa.

Thompson will be electronically tagged for a year and has been given an indefinite sexual harm prevention order.

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Janice Atkinson MEP suspended

Janice Atkinson MEP has been suspended from the party after one of her staff was videoed allegedly trying to inflate a restaurant bill so she could claim it on expenses.

A party spokesman said:
The party is incredibly disappointed with Ms. Atkinson, who appears to have exercised extremely poor judgement in acting in a way that the party has never, and would never condone. The party has acted swiftly and immediately, and just as we showed when we suspended another MEP for financial irregularities, we always maintain a zero tolerance attitude towards acts of this nature.

Conservative councillors in Medway defect to UKIP

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Conservative councillor faces deselection over racist and sexist jokes

A Conservative councillor on Hinkley & Bosworth Borough Council is facing deselection after sending "funny" emails with racist and sexist jokes to colleagues.

Cllr Peter Batty was forced to resign as leader of the Conservative group on the council last month and now faces deselection by Charnwood Conservative Association.

Conservative candidate jailed for electoral fraud

A Conservative council candidate charged with making a false declaration on his nomination papers has been given a 6 month sentence for electoral fraud.

Michael Fadaka put himself forward as a Conservative candidate for Enfield Council in last year's local elections but he was barred from elected office until 2016 because of a previous conviction for a £30k benefit fraud secured by Enfield Council itself.

Fadaka admitted to making a false declaration in February this year and was sentenced to 6 months in prison at Wood Green Crown Court today.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Living Wage - Road to Hell, Paved with (aparantly) Good Intentions.

Living wage - a factual calculation of an indicative figure for an annual income requried by a person based on their family situation (single, part of a couple, with out kids, with 1 kid, 2, 3...) to have the minimum 'acceptible' quality of life.

You can argue over what the minumum acceptible quality of life is (from absolutely nothing, to palaces and riches) - or about whether certain family situations should be 'permitted', or how detailed/general the different groups should be, and even where the 'wage' should come from (who pays it) but the principle of a 'Living Wage' is fact, not opinion.

Having said that, Living Wage is oriented to 'earnings' - so excludes in-work benefits etc - I'd rather see a 'Living Income' so the division between benefits and earnings is more transparent. I would especailly like this as in-work benefits are often related to income - so vary one and the other vairies too.

The Living Wage Foundation are the good/bad guys here... they are a charity that have claimed the 'Living Wage' mantle - they calculate a figure and then get grants from government to promote it and income from employers who want their acreditiation.

The Living Wage Foundation calculation arrives at two figures - one for London and one for the rest of the UK.

To arrive at the figure, figures are calculated for various different family situations (which obviously vary hugely - in 2014 from £5.70 for a member of a couple, £8.30 for a single, through a whole range up to £21.10 for a single parent with three chidlren) these indivdiual figures are weighted and averaged (in 2014 to £9.20) and then it is adjusted so acredited employers aren't asked for to pay too much of an increase - in 2014 the adjusted figure was £7.95 (a reduction of £1.35).

As you can see the final published 'Living Wage' is insufficient for every class of family member except a member of a childless couple. However despite this, the 'acredition' will give employers  a solid excuse to pay this low figure, and indeed to boast about it.

So really they are just selling indulgnces like the medieval roman catholic church.

Lib Dem PPC tells undercover reporter how to make fraudulent donations

The Lib Dems' chief fundraiser, racial equality spokesman and PPC for Brent Central, Ibrahim Taguri, has been caught in a sting by the Independent telling an undercover reporter posing as an Indian businessman how to fraudulently donate money to the Lib Dems in secret,

Some of the ways Taguri told the reporter to cheat the system include backdating cheques so they can be declared against a different financial year, splitting donations between himself and his wife and giving his cousins the money so they can donate it in smaller amounts between them.

As well as telling him how to commit fraud he also explained that his donations would but him "help" from the party, including putting the reporter in touch with someone at the GLA who might be able to help him get grants for this fictional housing company and dinners with cabinet ministers including Nick Clegg.

Taguri has voluntarily withdrawn himself from the Lib Dem whip and will stand as an independent candidate in the May election but intends to return to the Lib Dems after the election once he has cleared his name. From the Independent's report it looks like he's been caught bang to rights but based on past experience of the Electoral Commission allowing the Lib Dems to keep £2.4m in illegal donations of stolen money from a convicted fraudster he should get away with it.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Conservative councillor in Suffolk refuses to resign despite moving to America

A Conservative county councillor in Suffolk has refused to resign despite moving 4,000 miles away to North Carolina.

Cllr Brian Riley says that he doesn't need to resign because he can still do the job by Skype and email when he's moved to his retirement home in the States. He says that he will visit Suffolk every 6 weeks or so.

Riley need only attend one meeting every 6 months by law to remain a councillor and will continue to be paid £10k a year in allowances.

The local Conservative Party have suspended him.

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