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

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