March 12, 2007

Probe into alleged illegal BNP vote

An investigation has been launched into claims that BNP councillors in Sandwell allegedly voted illegally at an annual budget meeting.

Sandwell Council lawyers are to pass on information to police after allegations that one or more of the borough's four BNP councillors took part in the meeting despite being in arrears with their council tax. It is illegal for local authority members to vote on budgetary matters if they are more than two months behind with payments.

A Sandwell Council spokesman confirmed an investigation was under way into the allegations against BNP councillors James Lloyd, Simon Smith, Carl Butler and Russell Green.

"The council has a duty to take action if someone participates and votes in a budget debate when they are in council tax arrears of more than two months. Council lawyers will shortly be passing information to police about a member who took part in last Tuesday's council tax vote."

Any councillor found guilty of voting illegally in this way can be forced to resign, face a hefty fine or could even go to prison for up to two years.

Coun Darren Cooper, secretary of the Labour group on Sandwell Council, which has an overwhelming majority, said: "It is totally outrageous that things have reached this stage."

Coun Lloyd, leader of the BNP on Sandwell Council, admitted he could be the focus of the investigation. He admitted he had still to pay his latest council tax bill. But he claimed he knew nothing about not being able to vote until he received a letter from the local authority after he got back from the budget meeting.

icWolverhampton

13 comments:

Antifascist said...

Amazing how many BNP councillors manage to get into arrears with their council tax, despite getting the councillor's allowance. See here for more: http://www.zen26144.zen.co.uk/articles/crapcouncillors.htm

R2K said...

: )

Arry said...

Wonder if he knows the Doncasters of Dagenham?

Anonymous said...

Kick the bastard out.

Antifa said...

shouldn't that be "Kick the Bastards out"

It is plural lol

Joe Bloggs said...

Yet another one in trouble! Where do they get these tossers?

Anonymous said...

The BNP are a bunch of losers, liars, thieves and morons.

Jimmy said...

Just got this off icBirmingham

'BNP councillors face the boot in voting scandal

THE British National Party could be kicked off Sandwell Council after police were alerted to an alleged illegal voting scandal.

Sources say all four councillors for the far right party are under investigation over claims that they took part in an annual budget meeting despite being in arrears with their council tax.

It is illegal for local authority members to vote on budgets if they are more than two months behind with the payments.

Those found guilty can be forced to resign from their council, and could be fined or even face imprisonment for up to two years.

Last night James Lloyd, the leader of the BNP on Sandwell Council, admitted he could be the focus of the investigation.

"It quite possibly could be me because I still have to pay my latest bill," he said.

"But I knew nothing about not being able to vote until I received a letter from the council after I got back from the budget meeting.

"If Sandwell Council cannot send out their letters on time, what am I supposed to do?

"I have to work hard for a living and often have to pay my bills late.

"This is just a dirty tricks campaign by Labour and we will fight it all the way."

Darren Cooper, Labour Group secretary, hit back and claimed: "It is totally outrageous that things have reached this stage.

"At least one could face criminal proceedings and the rest will face an inquisition from the council's standards board.

"What we are seeing here is the end of the line for the BNP in Sandwell."

The four BNP councillors under threat are leader James Lloyd, Russell Green, Carl Butler and Simon Smith.

Both Mr Lloyd and Mr Smith are no strangers to controversy.

Mr Lloyd hit the headlines earlier this year after the closure of his Lagoon pub in Tipton.

He lost his licence after the police forced brewery bosses to sack him because he had failed to hand over CCTV footage of a fight on the premises.

Mr Smith made the news in 2001 after being sacked from a teaching job in Solihull when bosses discovered he was standing as a BNP candidate in the European elections.

He was unavailable for comment last night. But Mr Green denied the accusations. "I know nothing about this and I certainly was not in arrears when I voted on the budget," he said.

A spokesman for Sandwell Council confirmed an investigation was underway.

"The council has a duty to take action if someone participates and votes in a budget debate when they are in council tax arrears of more than two months," he explained.

"Council lawyers will shortly be passing information on to the police about a member who took part in Tuesday's council tax vote and will co-operate fully with any criminal investigation which may result."

Sam said...

Isn't James Lloyd the one who ran that Lagoon pub (until the police had it closed down)? The one where there were attacks with machetes and automatics?

Antifascist said...

@Jimmy

I presume you're referring to this: http://82.69.12.18/lancasteruafblog/index.php?itemid=688
He's a little star, isn't he!

Antifascist said...

Whoops. :-)

@Jimmy - thanks for the update.

@Sam - Read the last comment.

Sam said...

Hope you haven't forgotten that you need to update you crap BNP councillors page. :-)

Antifascist said...

@sam

I had - but it's done now. Thanks for the reminder!

Seven councillors in trouble, and all in a single month. Tut-tut.