The Green Bank #leafletgate incident during the 2015 Mayoral election was confirmation to many that Tower Hamlets First were doing whatever they wanted to do with no regard for the law.
Tower Hamlets First ignored the damning judgement of the electoral petition, ignored the law of the land and they ignored the electoral process just like they did in the previous election.
Photographs and video of a man caught in the act of delivering Rabina Khan’s election leaflets inside Tower Hamlets Homes newsletters published here were reprinted by the Standard and Guardian.
It was even on the telly.
Which might indicate the seriousness of this event.
We were wrong.
Because Tower Hamlets First did get away with it.
The Metropolitan Police did identify the mystery canvasser. But all that happened was that he and ‘all concerned parties’ were given ‘words of advice’. (Letter with contact details redacted and full text of MPS response below.)
Text of letter from Metropolitan Police to re Leafletgate
“From: SC01 – Homicide and Major Crime Command Special Enquiry Team
In reference to the allegation you made to Police on 16th May 2015, regarding the leafleting of political party material along with publications from Tower Hamlets Homes on the Greenbank Estate, E1.
I am writing to advise you that this matter has now been investigated.
Words of advice have been issued to all concerned parties, including the male concerned so that they are informed as to the law around this particular offence.
No further police action will be taken and this investigation is now closed.
Please be reassured that all allegations around electoral fraud are taken very seriously, and this outcome was decided after a full assessment of the circumstances of this particular case.
Many thanks for taking the time to report this matter.
Should you wish to discuss this matter then please do not hesitate to contact me.
Uh? Words of advice? Bet that scared ’em.
LW did ask the MPS for a more detailed response but has not received a reply.
LW checked with the Electoral Commission to see what action they would be taking and got this response:
“The Commission does not regulate campaign material, and is a matter for the local police and authority concerned.”
So that’s it then
So the police found out who the mystery canvassers was and had a chat with him and whoever he was working for but they aren’t telling us.
And the Electoral Commission don’t see any problem with someone delivering the electoral material for a political candidate and a newsletter from Tower Hamlets Homes at the same time.
All this compounded by the fact that Rabina Khan was the Tower Hamlets First cabinet member responsible for housing and so responsible for – Tower Hamlets Homes.
A person more cynical than LW might think there is some sort of link there.
The bottom line
The rule of law still seems to be suspended during local elections. Well, in Tower Hamlets anyway.
No doubt Rabina Khan and the other corruptly elected Tower Hamlets First councillors will be having a giggle about getting away with it once again.
And you can’t blame them.
Best they make the most of today, because tomorrow they might not be laughing at all.
Note: LW did receive the response from the MPS back in June but has been a bit busy. Apologies for the delay in publishing.
For more information
- Rabina Khan reports Love Wapping to police re “Leafletgate”
- Rabina Khan’s election leaflets delivered inside THH newsletter