Former Tory candidate in Tower Hamlets ticked off for comparing Respect to “paedophiles”

A Conservative candidate who previously stood for election as a councillor in Tower Hamlets has been ticked off by his party for comparing the Respect Party with paedophiles.

Matt Smith, a Tory candidate for the Welsh Assembly next Thursday, has been reprimanded for “completely unacceptable” comments made on his Facebook page.

Mr Smith, who stood for election to Tower Hamlets council last May, reportedly said the Respect Party, who have two councillors in the borough, had “groomed” a GCSE politics student in reference to one of their campaign videos.

He is believed to have said that “Respect groom them like paedophiles in an internet chat room.”

A Welsh Conservative spokesman said: “We have noted these comments from Matt Smith, which were made before his selection as an Assembly election candidate.

“The comments are completely unacceptable, and Matt has made it clear he apologises unreservedly for any offence he may have caused.

“We have issued Mr Smith with a warning about his future conduct, which he has accepted.”

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The Respect Party was not available to comment.