Search

High Court latest: Council worker ‘offered to help man vote’

PUBLISHED: 11:08 17 February 2015 | UPDATED: 11:37 17 February 2015

Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman is accused of election fraud

Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman is accused of election fraud

Archant

A voter became suspicious when a council worker offered to “fold” and “post” his voting papers at a Limehouse polling station, a judge sitting at a special High Court hearing has heard.

Robert Cherry told how he feared that the votes he had cast during the local elections in May last year were at risk of being invalidated.

He appeared yesterday at the Election Court trial where Lutfur Rahman, independent mayor of Tower Hamlets - and leader of Tower Hamlets First (THF), has been accused of “electoral fraud”.

Mr Cherry said he had voted at a polling station in the Cyril Jackson school when a council employee offered to help.

“After completing my votes and preparing to post them in the different ballot boxes, an employee of Tower Hamlets offered to take, fold them, and post them for me,” he said. “I declined and posted my papers myself.”

Mr Cherry told election commissioner Richard Mawrey, who is sitting as a judge at the trial. that he had voted many times but had never had such an offer before.

“I felt it was inappropriate,” he said. “I believed it was a possibility that somebody might invalidate my vote either by marking with a pen or a tear in the paper.”

His comments came as Peter Golds, leader of the Conservative group on Tower Hamlets Council, spoke of concern at police forces around the country not responding to “electoral malpractice”.

Addressing the court, he said: “In my experience elections in [Tower Hamlets] are the least transparent, worst managed and corrupt I have seen in London.

“For over a decade electoral malpractice has been an ongoing problem in the borough ... masses of evidence has been sent to the police and either ignored or been subject to ‘cut and paste’ investigations.”

Former political adviser Andy Erlam is leading a group of four voters who have taken legal action against Mr Rahman. The group wants Mr Mawrey to declare the result of the May 2014 mayoral election, which saw Mr Rahman elected for a second term, void and order a re-run. Mr Rahman denies wrongdoing.

The hearing continues.

Related articles

Latest East London News Stories

18:00

Pupils in Tower Hamlets primary schools are among 9,000 children up and down the country taking part in trials to find out if different cultural learning approaches can help improve their achievement rates.

“St Leonard’s should have been idyllic,” says Paul Connolly, a resident of the former Tower Hamlets’ children’s home where sexual abuse was rife.

12:25

After more than £50 million worth of gold and jewellery was stolen in London last year, the Met is warning people to be vigilant against the theft of gold during Diwali.

Experts believe one in six people across the UK will have a mental health crisis this week that could lead to them developing a serious disorder.

07:00

An education charity bringing east London schoolchildren together with pensioners on inter-generation projects has been nominated for a Liberty Human Rights award.

A paedophile has been jailed for historical child sexual abuse at a former Tower Hamlets children’s home where youngsters were in council care in the 1970s and 80s.

Yesterday, 09:51

The Boundary Commission has announced revised proposals for changes to constituency seats.

Yesterday, 09:35

Night Tube drivers are set to be balloted for industrial action in a dispute over their career progression.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now