'˜No further action' over Lewes election allegations, police say

Sussex Police have closed an investigation into allegations of election fraud in Lewes as there is '˜insufficient evidence'.

Thursday, 16th March 2017, 5:34 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:47 am
No Caption ABCDE SUS-160615-113351001

The two allegations, both claiming potential election expenses irregularities, were made in connection with the 2015 General Election campaigns of both Lewes MP Maria Caulfield and former Lewes MP Norman Baker.

Sussex Police have confirmed today (Thursday, March 16) that no further action will be taken as there is ‘insufficient evidence’ of fraud. A police spokesman said the decision had been made within the last few weeks.

A police spokesman said: “In May and June 2016 Sussex Police received several allegations of election expenses irregularities by candidates in the 2015 parliamentary General Election.

“An extension of one year for two investigations to take place was granted by a District Judge following two applications made in June 2016. Following thorough investigations into both allegations Sussex Police has now decided that no further action will be taken as there is insufficient evidence.”

Responding to the decision, Ms Caulfield said: “I am delighted that Sussex Police has dropped this investigation into my election expenses. All of my election expenses were submitted in full accordance with election law and I am pleased that Sussex Police has recognised this.

“I have co-operated fully with Sussex Police and would like to thank them for this thorough investigation. I am pleased that I can continue carrying out my duties as the Member of Parliament for Lewes without the unwarranted investigation brought about by my political opponents.”

Councillor Sarah Osbourne, leader of the Liberal Democrat group on Lewes District Council, said: “I welcome that the investigation in Norman Baker’s election expenses has been dropped.”

Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.

Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.

1) Make our website your homepage

2) Like our Facebook page

3) Follow us on Twitter

4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.

And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!

Always the first with your local news.

Be part of it.