Sunday, 10 February 2013

Tory candidate tried to rig election result by forging signatures

A Conservative candidate who tried to rig a local by-election by forging signatures was caught out - by a spelling mistake, a court heard.

Cengizhan Cerit, 47, known as Jem Cerit, needed ten residents to nominate him so he could stand as a candidate for Beaver Ward in the Ashford Borough Council by-election in November 2011.

But the wealthy businessman and landlord, who owns fast-food chain Perfect Pizza, faked the  signatures on his election registration form and then tried to apply for hundreds of postal votes so he could rig the election.

His cheating scheme was exposed by a simple spelling error - where a man was listed twice with two spellings of the name ‘Arnold’.

Canterbury Crown Court heard the Turkish property owner, who ran an empire of 68 houses with more than 300 tenants, failed to spot the mistake in the Electoral Register.

Father-of-two Cerit was convicted by a jury of three charges of election fraud at Canterbury Crown Court today and has been warned he could face jail.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Bent cops let off by ‘woeful’ watchdog

BENT cops are dodging justice because of “woeful” probes by the police watchdog, MPs warn today.

Some of its investigations “barely scratch the surface”. And it wastes time on trivial complaints while “gravely” serious cases are largely neglected.

Today’s damning MPs’ report reveals that the public had gripes over nearly one in four cops last year, but the Independent Police Complaints Commission was “woefully under equipped” to take action.

The report says the overstretched IPCC “has neither the powers nor the resources to get to the truth when the integrity of the police is in doubt”. Its failure “leaves the public frustrated and faithless”.

Read the full story from the source The Sun

For more information also read the article in the Independent

Surrey County Council fails a woman in care

The unnamed woman, in her 80s, was close to death when she was finally found, by chance, at her home in Banstead, Surrey.

A district nurse discovered her last Thursday. She was suffering kidney failure, severe bed sores and had only a faint pulse.

Surrey County Council failed to provide alternative care for her after Carefirst 24 was shut down by police and the UK Border Agency officers.

The pensioner, who normally received four visits a day, is still in hospital recovering from her ordeal.

She was only found by chance by a district nurse who popped in to visit her. The Surrey Safeguarding Adults Board, made up of representatives from the council, police and the NHS, have launched an urgent inquiry.

Read the full story form the source Telegraph

Police constable, 28, 'gave three-year-old girl a sexually transmitted disease

A police officer allegedly gave a three-year-old girl a sexually transmitted disease when he abused her, a court has today heard.

PC James Williams, who was based at Trinity Road police station, in Bristol, is accused of assaulting the toddler in a house in the city and passing on chlamydia to her.

Williams, who is suspended from duties as a response officer for Avon and Somerset police, denies sexual assault by penetration on a child under 13.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Detective Chief Inspector jailed for offering to sell information on phone-hacking

A senior counter-terrorism detective who claimed she wanted to blow the whistle on the phone hacking investigation was jailed for 15 months yesterday.

Detective Chief Inspector April Casburn, 53, rang the News of the World to discuss Scotland Yard’s decision to launch a new investigation into phone hacking.

She claimed she made the call because the public should know that counter-terrorism officers were being used to investigate phone hacking instead of ‘saving lives’.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Magistrate fiddled £22,000 in expenses

A magistrate who presided over benefit fraud cases is facing jail after cheating the taxpayer out of more than £22,000 in an expenses scam.

Carlton Janson, 69, fiddled his claims on mileage and allowances for loss of earnings while sitting in Bolton, Greater Manchester.

The businessman, once a former director of his local golf club, had frequently been chairman of the bench after being sworn in by a judge in 2000.

Read the full story from the source Telegraph

Ex-councillor accused of embezzling £85,000 from elderly couple

A former councillor accused of embezzling more than £85,000 from an elderly couple is due to stand trial in the spring.

Gordon Beurskens, 49, is accused of obtaining a mandate to operate five bank accounts and cards held by James and Janet McQue over a three-year period.

Mr Beurskens, who represented the Action to Save St John's Hospital campaign on West Lothian Council, allegedly siphoned off £85,173.35 from the pensioners' life savings through cash withdrawals  on-line transactions and bank transfers.

Read the full story from the source STV

Female social worker 'sexually abused two sisters aged six and ten

A social worker was today accused of sexually abusing two young sisters while she was working for their family as a live-in nanny.

Elaine Hewitt, now 49, is alleged to have warned one of the girls - who were aged six and ten at the time - she would be taken into care if she revealed what had been going on.

Married Hewitt, from St Helens in Merseyside, was a teenager working as an au pair for a family near Watford, Hertfordshire, when she is alleged to have carried out the abuse more than 30 years ago.

She is now facing nine child sex abuse charges after the younger of the two alleged victims, now aged 38 and 42, went to the police in 2011.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Parish clerk uses £28,000 of council funds to settle debts

A parish council clerk helped herself to £28,000 of taxpayers money when she plunged into debt and took out a number of pay-day loans, a jury heard today.

Lynne Turner, 50, is accused of regularly transferring money from the parish council’s bank account into her own after she amassed £90,000 of debt and then took out loans from Wonga.com.

She was arrested after her successor at the council noticed £28,200 was unaccounted for.

Turner, of High Wycombe, worked at Hughenden Parish Council in Buckinghamshire for 17 years before quitting in September 2011.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Police corruption: Criminals 'give officers steroids'

Dozens of police officers are being investigated for using anabolic steroids supplied by criminals in gyms, a report has revealed.

It also says some officers abuse their power to obtain sexual favours.

Acpo's spokesman on professional standards, Staffordshire Chief Constable Michael Cunningham, said the problems caused by officers taking steroids were "a significant threat" to the integrity and professionalism of the police service.

Read the full story from the source BBC News

Two police officers and one journalist arrested in corrupt payments to officials probe

Two police officers and a Sun journalist were arrested today by detectives investigating alleged corrupt payments to public officials.

The reporter - named by sources as the newspaper's crime reporter Anthony France - has become the 22nd journalist from the News International title to be arrested in Scotland Yard's investigation into corrupt payments to public officials between 2004 and 2011.

Today’s arrests are a result of information provided to police by News Corporation’s Management and Standards Committee.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Former council housing officer jailed for part in rent deposit fraud plot

A former council housing officer was one of two people jailed yesterday for his part in a plot to defraud a rent deposit scheme.

Adnan Nazir, 34, was handed a two and half year sentence at Wood Green Crown Court after an investigation by his former employer, Barnet Council.

The crook, who worked for the council for two and a half years, carried out six of the 41 illicit payments whilst still in his role as a housing officer. He and his accomplice both pleaded guilty at the trial.

Read the full story from the source 24 Dash

Wirral Council fined £25,000 after health and safety breach

WIRRAL Council has been fined £25,000 plus £9,000 court costs after employees were diagnosed with a debilitating condition that has left them with ongoing problems with their hands.

The Health and Safety Executive prosecuted the council after 29 workers in the parks and leisure department were affected by “Hand Arm Vibration” syndrome.

Read the full story from the source Wirral Globe

Rutland County Council pursues legal action against councillors

Rutland County Council has voted to seek an injunction to prevent three of its members harassing its chief executive and other employees.

The decision was taken at a special meeting of the full council last night (Thursday).

The meeting had been called to discuss the results of an investigation the council commissioned into the actions of Coun Richard Gale, Coun David Richardson and Coun Nick Wainwright, who make up a political group called Rutland Anti-Corruption Group.

Read the full story from the source Rutland & Stamford Mercury

NHS watchdog is failing us

The health watchdog has lost the confidence of the public after missing some of the worst scandals in hospitals and care homes, according to MPs.

The Care Quality Commission is not carrying out enough adequate inspections to ensure patients are not at risk, they said.

In a scathing report, MPs from the health select committee warn that ‘patients, relatives and the public do not have confidence in the CQC’s standards or the outcomes of its inspections’.

The watchdog had declared that the maternity unit at the University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay trust in Cumbria, where up to seven babies died, was providing ‘safe’ and ‘high-quality’ care.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Porn councillor David Sprason faces two-month suspension

A Leicestershire county councillor faces a two-month suspension after a pornographic DVD was found in his work laptop.

Councillor David Sprason stepped down as deputy council leader in November over the DVD, which was found in 2007.

The matter only emerged last year after a letter by a monitoring officer was leaked.

Read the full story from the source BBC News

Police officer under investigation for smashing man's mobile phone

Two police officers are being investigated over videos which show them allegedly knocking mobiles out of the hands of members of the public who were trying to film them over separate incidents.

One case in Glasgow shows a man's mobile knocked to the ground and apparently smashed by an officer.

Another video, filmed during an arrest in Edinburgh, shows an officer marching towards the cameraman and smacking the mobile out of the way. The man involved claimed he was arrested immediately afterwards.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Council aide who smacked female office clerk on the backside keeps his job

A PROVOST’s right-hand man has kept his job – despite being convicted yesterday of slapping a female colleague’s rear end.

Margaret Shankland felt “completely humiliated” when she was smacked by heavyweight council officer George Scott Muir.

Margaret – a committee clerk – was attacked as they waited for a lift at North Lanarkshire Council’s HQ in Motherwell.

Muir, 51, admitted the assault in court but is still in his job. His duties include carrying Provost James Robertson’s chain of office during official ceremonies.

Read the full story from the source Daily Record

Former councillor drove for 25 YEARS without a licence

A former Tory Parliamentary candidate drove without a licence for 25 years… because he was too ashamed to tell his dad he had failed his L-test.

Andrew Ferryman, 44, was only caught when he tried to cover up his crime after tripping a speed camera. The ex-Conservative councillor, who stood for MP in the 2005 General Election, told police his car was being driven by an ex-partner who had moved to Australia.

He sent officers an email from a friend which seemed to back up his story – but they saw through his lies. Ferryman was given a four-month suspended jail sentence after admitting perverting the course of justice and driving without insurance.

Read the full story from the source Mirror

Councillor accused of peeing in car park

Independent Midlothian councillor Peter de Vink is said to have been spotted by cleaners. The alleged incident followed a meeting at the council’s headquarters in Dalkeith last Tuesday.

It is believed Cllr de Vink, whose support keeps the SNP in power in Midlothian, had voted at the meeting in favour of closing public toilets. Staff said they had seen him let his dogs out of his car for a pee – then joined them.

It is understood they reported Cllr de Vink to council chief executive Kenneth Lawrie. Political opponents said if he was guilty of such “appalling” behaviour, he should resign.

Read the full story from the source Edinburgh Evening News

Councillor guilty of bullying colleagues

A former chairman of Cheveley Parish Council breached the authority’s code of conduct by bullying two colleagues, a panel has found.

Cllr Roderick Humphries, now vice-chairman of the council, was also found to have failed to treat the complainants, parish councillors Sheila Marvin and Kathleen Sneller, with respect, and brought his office into disrepute.

Read the full story from the source Newmarket Journal

Fraud MP Margaret Moran gets supervision order

Former MP Margaret Moran has been sentenced to a two-year supervision and treatment order after falsely claiming more than £53,000 in expenses.

A judge had ruled the former Labour MP for Luton was unfit to stand trial for mental health reasons and so could not receive a criminal conviction.

Read the full story from the source BBC News

Police inspector sacked after posting a picture of his genitals on Facebook

A long-serving senior police inspector has been sacked after posting a picture of his genitals on Facebook.

Inspector Daemon Johnson - who had served Northamptonshire Police for 25 years - was fired after shocked officers spotted the explicit photo online.

The experienced officer also sent inappropriate emails and made lewd comments to female members of staff it emerged today.

He was sacked for gross misconduct following an investigation by Northamptonshire Police's professional standards department.

Read the full story from the source Mail on Line

Newspaper 'blacklisted' because of negative council coverage

A weekly newspaper claims it has been blacklisted for advertising by a county council – because the authority’s bosses are unhappy with the tone of its coverage.

Today’s South Wales Guardian, which circulates mainly in the Ammanford area, carried a front page story and editor’s comment piece accusing Carmarthenshire County Council of imposing an “advertising blackout” since September.

The story said: “Council advertising in the Guardian has all but dried up since publication of an editorial lambasting the authority’s now notorious Sainsbury’s press release regarding the Welsh [Government’s] call-in of plans for stores in Llandeilo and Cross Hands.

“Council figures show that during eight weeks between September 27 and November 21, the authority spent £9,551.69 in the county’s three newspapers with just £224.99 or 2.3% spent in the Guardian.

Read the full story from the source South Wales Guardian