Polling Station

Calls for an inquiry into Tower Hamlets electoral fraud investigation

10 March 2017
  • More could have been done to investigate the many allegations of fraud and malpractice in Tower Hamlets before and during the 2014 Mayoral election.
  • Investigations that did take place were not undertaken to the highest possible standards.
  • Evidence was missed in the Met’s investigation - a bundle of 27 files sent to the Director of Public Prosecution was not reviewed by the Met.
  • Evidence of criminal wrongdoing, and expeditious investigative work could have generated sufficient evidence to seek a criminal prosecution.

Following an investigation into the difficulties of tackling election fraud and malpractice in the capital, the London Assembly Police and Crime Committee publishes its findings and recommendations today.

The letter recommends that the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime requests Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) investigate the Met Police role in matters relating to the 2014 Mayoral Election in Tower Hamlets; the findings of the Election Court judgement 2015; and associated investigations thereafter.

Steve O’Connell AM, Chairman of the Police and Crime Committee, said: 

“During our investigation, we, as a Committee, have been shocked to uncover major failings by the Metropolitan Police in its ability to investigate allegations of electoral fraud and malpractice.

Missed files of evidence; missed opportunities to gather witness statements; witnesses who were prepared to give evidence in the Election Court but were unwilling to do so in criminal proceedings – this is not what we expect from a supposedly world-leading police force.

We urge the Deputy Mayor to use her powers to press for HMIC to take the matter further, with the aim that eventually we can assure Londoners - and particularly residents in Tower Hamlets - that justice has been done.”

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Notes to editors

  1. The Committee letter to the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime is attached.
  2. Steve O’Connell AM, Chairman of the London Assembly Police and Crime Committee, is available for interview. Please see contact details below.
  3. As well as investigating issues that matter to Londoners, the London Assembly acts as a check and a balance on the Mayor.


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