UK's Conservatives fined over electoral spending

Police investigate if breaches of spending rules were deliberate 

UK's Conservatives fined over electoral spending

World Bulletin / News Desk

The U.K.’s ruling Conservative Party was fined a record £70,000 ($85,000) on Thursday for breaking spending rules during recent election campaigns.

The country’s independent Electoral Commission said the party broke regulations in the May 2015 general election and in several by-elections.

Police are investigating but Conservatives have described the irregularities as an “administrative mistake”.

"There needs to be a review of how the Electoral Commission's processes and requirements could be clarified or improved," the party said in a statement.

Findings from the Electoral Commission revealed the party failed to correctly report all expenditure on various occasions.

“The inclusion in the party return of what in the commission’s view should have been reported as candidate spending meant that there was a realistic prospect that this enabled [the Conservative party’s] candidates to gain a financial advantage over opponents,” it said.

The Metropolitan Police is looking at the evidence to see if the lack of financial reporting by the party was deliberate, as the Electoral Commission has referred to a possible criminal offense.

In a separate investigation, police reportedly passed various files to Crown Prosecution Service over allegations of breaking local spending limits by 20 Conservative lawmakers.

 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 16 Mart 2017, 17:25
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