Postal voting cheats are threat to May elections
Fears of widespread fraud in the local elections in May were raised yesterday after a judge said that the rules for postal ballots were fatally flawed.
Just weeks before more than two million people are expected to vote by post in local council and mayoral elections, Richard Mawrey, QC, said that postal voting on demand was “lethal to the democratic process”.
He said that the current system made “wholesale electoral fraud both easy and profitable” and accused politicians of failing to act after past scandals. He urged sweeping reforms to electoral law dealing with corruption.
His comments came as he found a Conservative councillor guilty of vote rigging by using postal ballots in the names of hundreds of “ghost voters” fraudulently added to the electoral register. Eshaq Khan was stripped of his council seat in Slough, Berkshire, and banned from holding office for five years after being found guilty of corrupt practices.
The case highlighted how new checks designed to stamp out the misuse of postal ballots were by-passed by Khan’s team within a year of their introduction, enabling him to gain a marginal seat from Labour last year.
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