Uncertain if UKIP candidate can prove innocence – or otherwise – before election

Candidate has volunteered himself for interview. Police have yet to interview potential witnesses.

It appears there is little chance that Richard Wilkins, UKIP candidate for Newport North, will have the opportunity to prove his innocence – or otherwise – before the local elections on Thursday.

Responding to questions OnTheWight put to Isle of Wight Police yesterday, asking whether the investigation might be concluded before the election, they said they weren’t in position to give an exact timetable for enquiries; that the length of the investigation would depend on what evidence becomes available as enquiries continue.

Police also confirmed that, as yet, no one has been arrested or charged.

In a statement the Police did say, “This is a sensitive and complex case during local elections, and it is of paramount importance that all enquiries are carried out diligently.”

Story surfaced two weeks ago
OnTheWight broke the story of the IW Conservative’s allegations two weeks ago, but it was only reported to the Police last week.

Volunteered to be interviewed
The Police have confirmed that a 51 year old man volunteered to be interviewed about the allegations relating to the falsifying of signatures on electoral nomination papers. The interview was carried out under caution.

As yet, the Police haven’t interviewed the potential witnesses, although they say a number of them have been identified and they “will be spoken to in due course.”

If proven to be true in court, the offence that is being accused is very serious and could lead to a prison sentence.

Tuesday, 30th April, 2013 12:29pm

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ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2aKu

Filed under: Island-wide, Isle of Wight News, Newport, Top story

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

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32 Comments on "Uncertain if UKIP candidate can prove innocence – or otherwise – before election"

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steephilljack

Congratulations to Alan Wells who has successfully discredited the Tory’s UKIP opponent leaving it all hanging in the air and awaiting further investigation on election day: brillant!
Should no charges be brought there will, of course, be another election for a councillor in Newport North.

Better Red than Bled

Is it me or is Richard Wilkins channeling Jim Davidson in his photo? Nick Nick!

B-Lucas

Oh dear, it is not rocket science to establish whether several named people did, or did not endorsed this man as a UKIP candidate. Is it their signature on the form, or not? If not there is a case for Mr Wilkins to answer . Why the delay and mystery.Inspector Morse could have this solved before his first cup of coffee.

matt.h

So, if I chose to sign Mr Wilkins form as ‘Joe Bloggs’ as a spoiler for example, and it was later shown that the signacture was false it would be Mr Wilkins fault – interesting.

Postal Voter
Please can anybody confirm if any family members using a postal vote this week have also been sent any candidate’s election leaflets as well from the council? I was chatting with one of my daughters over the weekend, whilst they are at University and they happened to mention in passing that the letter from the council with their postal vote, reply letter/card, etc. also contained one of… Read more »
matt.h

I would be fascinated to know which candidates leaflet you daughters received ?

Geoff Lumley

As an agent to a number of Labour candidates I would be very interested to have details of this. If true, it is probably illegal and certainly very bad practice

Robert Jones
Postal vote regulations have changed since my time as an Agent – yesterday’s man, you see; a sad decline – but it would be unprecedented for one candidate’s election address to be circulated with postal voting forms if they were sent by the Returning Officer. In my time, it was possible for Agents to deal with postal vote applications – I’m not so sure that’s the case… Read more »
Postal Voter

Hi mat, geoff, rob above: It is the Lake South and Conservative candidate’s leaflet.
Plan to let the Returning Officer know the exact details this week.
thanks

Return to Sender

I would do it pronto if I were you, ie. before Thursday’s election.

Sounds very unfair to me, but what do I know?

adi whittaker

hi i am the agent for the independent candidate for lake south i have text ray bloomfield to ask how ,first thing in the morning i will contact the Returning Officer and if need be the police ,and also his agent

no.5

There isn’t an Independent in Lake South…Tory, UKIP and Geoff Clynch ex BNP whose leaflets are all printed by Britain First, a BNP offshoot.

An abysmal choice of right wing candidates

adi whittaker

all the leaflets for lake south are printed and promoted by me at home so watch your step

adi whittaker

and see you Friday ill might even bring a leaflet and give it to you my self in a un polite manner

not willing to be named

David Williams certainly has been sending out letters with postal votes.

Concerned

Do you have proof of this?

wightywight

@concerned:

No..he/she hasn’t. Mainly because it’s [just about] impossible to do…

WW

wightywight
@nwtbn: Impossible. Postal votes are sent out by the electoral office in County Hall…they were all sent out over a week ago… To “send out letters WITH postal votes” infers they arrives in the same envelope as the voting material. That’s not possible. I mean, really not possible…it would involve having access to the postal vote envelopes and physically putting the material inside. I think we can… Read more »
phil jordan
@WW: You seem to have this about right, I think. I am standing in Ryde North West as an Independent candidate and applied for and was provided with a postal voters list for my Ward (along with the full electoral roll). I personally wrote a letter, signed and personally addressed hand written envelopes to 398 postal voters in my Ward and then delivered them by hand the… Read more »
Concerned

Hmm, I don’t doubt what you say WW, but how does that explain what Postal Voter has said about both his daughters receiving election leaflet of the Conservative candidate in the same envelope as their postal vote?

Would this amount to ‘vote rigging’?

Now, where have I heard that phrase before?

adi whittaker

as the agent for geoff clynch i would be interested to know more please can you email me please acw01983@gmail.com

Sally Perry

The council have refuted the claim that an election candidate’s leaflet could have been in the same envelope. Full details here: http://wig.ht/2aKM

MamaLu

I wouldn’t vote UKIP but I don’t think it really matters if the signatures were faked or not from a democratic point of view – only a procedural one – polling day will determine how many real supporters he has. Let the electorate judge him according to his merits and not whether he has the right signatures on a piece of paper.

Wight Orange

But surely the voters’ judgement of him has been damaged now though? Those who may have voted for him, might not?

I believe the outcome of the investigation should have been pushed through as a priority.

He’s not in my ward or of my politics but it does feel very much like there has been a smear campaign against him, which is totally unfair if true.

Robert Jones
You don’t think it matters either that a candidate has forged electors’ signatures on a nomination paper; or alternatively that he’s been the victim of a trick, also illegal; or that he’s been accused of deliberate electoral fraud without having any proper opportunity to defend himself before the election? Really? Leaving aside the consequences for the candidate and his agent if there has been wrongdoing from their… Read more »
Fred Karno
What ever anyone thinks of various political parties, candidates etc., is all irrelevant. The fact is that in this country, we have a pretty honest electoral system. We don’t have a situation as some other countries do, of rigged elections, all sorts of corrupt practices, ballot boxes tampered with, bribes, voters being intimidated and God knows what else. The fact is that “The Establishment” in this country… Read more »
Robert Jones
Just a passing thought – I don’t know why the police are involved at this stage anyway: the proper person to complain to – quietly, without taking gleeful political advantage – was the Returning Officer. If he then chooses to refer matters to the police, that should be for him and him alone to decide. Whatever anyone thinks of party politics, it saddens me to see the… Read more »
tryme

I hope Freemasonry has played no part in allowing matters to stand as they do prior to election day.

Rowan
Electoral fraud is serious. If it’s alleged then it needs to be investigated, and if the allegation turns out to be true then the people who commited the fraud must be prosecuted. But I’d also like to know where UKIP get their money from. They don’t have lots of members, so the fact that they’ve got so much money (spending £40,000 in South Shields, twice that in… Read more »
steve s

“doing the best for everybody” doesn’t need parties at all, Rowan.

Rowan
Well done on getting the most votes in Ventnor West, Steve (I’m guessing your surname!). Yes, I agree, independents can also do a good job. When party politics gets tribal then many politicians forget that they should be doing what’s best for everybody, not best for the advantage of their party. But I do think we need political parties as well. We need candidates to let their… Read more »
Rowan

Here’s where I read about UKIP spending £40k in South Shields:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2013/apr/26/south-shields-voters-ukip