Jack Straw Faces Disbarment From Parliament and One Year in Jail 84


Jack Straw is guilty of the criminal offence of treating – offering food and drink to electors as an induucement to vote – under the Representation of the People’s Act 1983, Clause 114 (2). The maximum penalty is one year in prison. As a corrupt electoral practice it brings disbarment from parliament for life – including the House of Lords.

The evidence against Straw is overwhelming. Free food was given to hundreds of Blackburn Muslim voters at a rally in his constituency on Sunday 25 April 2010. Speeches were made specifically calling on the recipients of the free food to vote for Jack Straw in Blackburn. He also made a speech urging them to vote for him, and he approached voters individually to ask for their votes in the hall where the free food was being given out.

Affidavits have been sworn to this effect and handed to the police. You can see them here:

Download file

A complaint about him has been formally made to Blackburn Police and given police report ref LC-201004271237.

Treating is not an obscure offence. It is number 2 in the Electoral Commission guidebook for police officers

http://www.tinyurls.co.uk/I2081

It is also detailed in the Association of Chief Police Officers “Guidance on Preventing and Detecting Electoral Malpractice” .

Download file

At Page 22 of the ACPO guide, there is important information on how Blackburn Police should be conducting this investigation:

1.1Suggested action for all cases:

preserve evidence

respect the secrecy of sealed documents and seek advice before opening

when election documents become evidence in a potential crime, the method of preservation by the police should include consultation with the elections office to agree a mutually beneficial way forward

invite the suspected party for interview under caution or consider Section 24(e) of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) 1984 (as amended by the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005)

consider advice from the Special Crime Division of the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)

inform the Returning Officer and the Electoral Commission via police SPOC

advise Police National Information and Computer Centre (PNICC) in scheduled return of all allegations and outcomes or immediately if there is a major allegation

In fact I expect them to avoid telling the Police National Information and Computer Centre – the authorities will try to bury this quickly and corruptly in Blackburn. There is a plaque proudly displayed in the entrance of the police station where I reported this treating. It states that the station was opened by Lord Taylor of Blackburn – the highly crooked Labour Party politician who was last year suspended from the House of Lords for Corruption –

http://richardwilsonauthor.wordpress.com/2009/01/25/sunday-times-exposes-uk-government-corruption-labour-members-of-the-house-of-lords-agree-to-take-cash-for-backing-legislation-changes/

The police station plaque bears another name also – Lord Adam Patel of Blackburn, who was put in the House of Lords because of his work as an “enforcer” of the Blackburn Muslim vote for Jack Straw, and who was himself present and implicated in the present instance of massive treating – see the affidavits above.

I am therefore sending copies of the dossier to the Independent Police Complaints Commission to be sure it is investigated properly, and the full rigour of the law applied to Mr Straw.

Christopher Hope of the Telegraph contacted Jack Straw’s constituency office, who gave one lie and two irrelevancies in reply to this accusation of treating. Straw’s defence is:

1) That people were asked to make a voluntary contribution to the cost of the food.

That appears to be a simple lie by Straw. All of the witnesses to whom I spoke – and I interviewed many others who were too scared to swear an affidavit – said they were never asked to make any contribution.

2) That the Returning Officer had approved the arrangements in advance.

He can’t. Straw’s people are, to say the least, very chummy with the Returning Officer. But Treating is a criminal offence and the Returning Officer can no more OK it than he can OK burglary. The Returnng Officer has no role at all in determining whether treating has taken place, which is solely a matter for the police, crown prosecution service and courts. Mr Tom Hawthorn of Electoral Commission HQ in London has confirmed this to me. It is also made very clear here:

http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/guidance_issued_on_eros_consent

3) That the advertisements for the event did not mention that free food will be provided

This is a complete irrelevance introduced by Jack Straw. Prior advertisement is nowhere a condition of the offence. The offence is of offering food and drink to influence someone to vote. Crimes are not mitigated because you do not advertise them in advance.

As I see it, the Police now have to act. Either Straw has to be charged under Representation of the People Act 1983, 114(2), or I have to be charged under the Representation of the People Act 1983, 106 – for making a false statement about a candidate.

If no action is taken against Straw, I shall be advertising free meals for anybody in Blackburn who wishes to vote against him.


84 thoughts on “Jack Straw Faces Disbarment From Parliament and One Year in Jail

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  • Biffo the Bear

    Micky, why do you think they inserted the word ‘corruptly’ into the sentences describing the provision?

    If refreshments were provided as innocently as they were received, then this case falls flat on its face, as it no doubt will after wasting taxpayers money.

    The onus is on the accuser to prove corrupt intent, and I don’t see any evidence of that.

    Idiot.

  • Blegburnduddoo

    Haven’t noticed anyone referring to the report in the Lancashire Telegraph Wednesday 28 April:

    “Police are taking no further action against Blackburn independent candidate Bushra Irfan, after allegations that voters were offered food to attend her rallies. “We have spoken to Mrs Irfan and given her appropriate advice” said a spokeswoman.”

    Apologies if I missed it.

    I gave her my postal vote. I wanted it to count, if only to help her to avoid losing her deposit.

  • Clark

    Biffo the Bear,

    you’re obviously new here; the name of the commenter comes *after* the comment, your reply was from Craig.

    How did you find this blog?

  • Tom (iow)

    >”Is this the most important thing a ‘human rights activist’ and our overstretched cps have to do with their time and our money? ”

    Winning an election by bribery is very serious and far from trivial. That the bribes needed to sway floating voters may be fairly trivial is irrelevant.

  • ScouseBilly

    Craig, after you’ve finished with Straw, perhaps you could look at Ed “I’m not a scientist” Millipede.

    The UK’s 2875 wind turbines are producing 134MW.

    The governments target by 2020 is 15% of supply

    Nuclear power currently produces c.15% or 6109MW.

    Ed Milipede hasn’t got his calculator out: 6109/134 = 45.489.

    Multiply this by our existing number of turbines and we arrive at 131,069 turbines needed.

    The latest turbines cost about £4m each, so that’d be £512,776,000,000… hmm, just a tad under the entire national debt!

    Sorry to go off topic but Nu-Lab’s irresponsible green energy fantasy will cost us all very very DEAR.

  • Clark

    Craig,

    interesting new bunch of critics this post seems to have attracted. If I didn’t have my tinfoil hat on I might think someone was feeling rattled…

  • Jak Straugh

    Treating in my constituency! Why, that is outrageous! Absolutely unacceptable, no question of it. Believe me, heads will roll for this. Not mine of course, but there’s a traitor who was at the meal, and later was overheard talking about doing a deal with the Liberals. Imagine that, after eating our curry! We’ll serve his head on a plate to the Press to make an example of him and get our spin doctors to do their business before election day.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    “I am not just the Justice Minister, I am justice!”

    pseudonymous ‘Jack Straw’ in real blog

    “I am not eccentric, I am concentric!”

    eponymous Salvador Dali, in ‘F is for Fake’

    Clark, they are all cybermen.

  • Ishmael

    In days of old a rough looking old crook with one eye was called a pirate. Is Gordon Broon a pirate or a good man? Prison is full of people who never done it. Strawman & gang would be in good company

  • Oscar

    I’ve no sympathy for any LibDem sympathisers who complain about Labour and Tory cheats.

    You have bought into the sleazy game by agreeing to participate in the leadership debates while denying the same opporunity to other reformist parties.

    Fair play (but only for the LibDems) is your call!!! People used to be executed for lesser acts of treachory.

  • glenn

    isla dowds:

    Not sure why you put ‘human rights activist’ in quotes, as if such a thing did not really exist. Like ‘Palestine’, perhaps.

    But Craig Murray does a lot for human rights. Just this week, for instance, he gave up a day and and a half and is still out of pocket for going to Swansea’s Amnesty branch to give a talk on human rights.

    The Swansea branch has never had such a well attended event, the issue of human rights was entirely new to a large young element of the 100-strong crowd. Amnesty will gain more members, and many people will become active for human rights because of it.

    Now Mr. Murray did this for free. As mentioned, he’s still out of pocket, and doesn’t seem in a hurry to be reimbursed.

    You have a _damned_ cheek making him out to be some sort of hypocrite, because he decides to go after corrupt politicians the day after.

  • ingo

    I am sad to read so many apologist comments here justifying electoral mal practise.

    Typically when their own backside is on fire they scream blue murder. for them the law seems to be an arse, or was it ass, or Arsch, can’t remember.

    had a brilliant youth meeting today.

    Jack twice agreed with Bushra Irfan, the independent challenger, so did the local Conservative who is as boring as you could possibly imagine.

    YThe Lib dem candidate had a few very good point to make, whilst jack got a grilling on his hijab retraction, young people seem to think he should have apologised instaly rather than wait until now, election time.

    He also says he does not support an attack on Iran, again, before an election, who knows what the slippery eel will say afterwards.

    good night from an eventfull Blackbunr, I’m bushed, another 14 hrs. day.

  • Larry from St. Louis

    Suhayl Saadi I am here.

    I haven’t posted on the website because my work is now complete, Craig has now joined

    a mainstream pro-war Zionist party.

    What more is there for me to do?

    I have wan and you have lost.

    You Ayrabs have no chance against us, even the Nazi BNP are now on our side.

  • Jack Straw

    sickkid1972

    I can’t go to jail, I am jail.

    I decide who goes to jail and who doesn’t.

    I decide what is lawful and what is not.

    I am the law.

    The sooner you lesser people realise that and bow down to the axis of Neo the better it would be for you.

    We are the Neo Labour, the Neo Conservatives and the Neo Liberal democrats that Craig has joined.

    That difference will it make if Neo Labour is replaced by NeoConservatives?

    We are all the same. What difference does it make that Neo Liberal Democrats may take a few seats away from us.

    They are us and we are them.

    The three parties of this country form a trinity, 1 power in 3 parts.

  • Paul Jakma

    Craig,

    If anyone with authority to investigate this ever looks into it, regardless of what you say your witnesses told you, the other side will surely be able to produce more of their own witnesses to say contributions were sought.

    In short, might it be wise to keep your powder dry on this one? Be careful of fighting battles that can’t be won but that *can* damage you.

  • Parky

    Apparently The Guardian has deserted Labour and is supporting the Lib Dem for the election. (It seems it is only the Daily Mirror backing Brown now) Is there any chance they may run with this story as they have been supportive of you recently ? For a charge like this to be investigated it needs widespread publicity.

    With the Brown gaff this week it seems to wheels are finally coming off the NuLabour cart. If Blair was the car salesman, Brown would seem to be the funeral director, at least he has the looks for it…

  • Strategist

    If the Telegraph go large with this, you’ve cracked it, Craig. Well done.

    And if Blackburn Police don’t get a move on, and “invite the suspected party for interview under caution”, then a complaint should be made directly to the Chief Constable of Lancashire. Followed by the IPCC.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Larry,

    Once again you have revealed your naivety by issuing a statement based on thin air:

    ‘a mainstream pro-war Zionist party.’

    So why do I support Lib Dem? An obvious answer is because they voted against the illegal Iraq ‘war’ that has consumed 8 years and more of my life.

    Lib Dem is not anti-war however, it agrees to the principle of fighting terrorists in Afghanistan but has formally agreed to end this war at the earliest opportunity.

    So what about Israel and Zionists?

    Nick Clegg’s record in this regard is undeniable. In January 2009 he called for EU sanctions against Israel, including an arms embargo. In December 2009, he publicly condemned Israel for having caused a “humanitarian crisis” in Gaza, and again called for EU pressure on Israel (and Egypt) to lift restrictions on imports into the area.

    Good, Good!

    Digging deeper into the power structures or the inner core of the Lib Dems – do we notice any buckling of the ‘core columns’ that might give us a nasty shock?

    If we peer into the corridors of power we learn this:

    Shadow deputy leader of the Lords, Lord Wallace told the Board that Israeli policy towards the Palestinians was “mistaken” and that, as a democracy, Israel should be held to higher standards.

    Lord Wallace has raised the Israel-EU trade agreement which is coming up for renewal. He spoke of “whether or not the EU should unconditionally renew that or whether there should be some negotiation on the conditions for that.”

    He added: “We have all of us got to grasp the issue of what we do about the Palestinians, what we do about Gaza and how we begin to get back to a negotiated settlement.

    The Board of Deputies treasurer, Laurence Brass, who is a former Liberal parliamentary candidate, said: “I don’t think it is helpful for the Board to only hear from politicians who want to tickle our tummies and tell us how wonderful Israel is, when we all know that the Israeli government’s peace credentials are being severely questioned in both London and Washington.”

    Pro-war Zionist party? A delusion – absolute bollocks!

    Thought for the day:

    At the moment the Liberal Democrat volume, ‘Why vote Lib Dem’ is number 236 in the Amazon sales charts. The Conservative volume is number 84,202, the Labour volume 28,322 and the Green volume 47,552.

  • Larry from St. Louis

    Mark,

    I just came back to check this blog and of course the above wasn’t me.

    I’m an American. We tend not to use the word “Zionist.” That among other things should have clued you in.

    But you don’t seem to be a big fan of scrutiny.

  • glenn

    Mark, please stop encouraging that silly, sad, neo-con teabagging freak. Just because I’ve replied to you on that silly bugger, just watch… he’ll get all excited again, and when he’s finished pleasuring himself, will start posting again in the hope of yet further replies.

    The more attention a teabagger receives, the more crazy they become. Which might be all very well and entertaining in a freak show, but that freak show is being taken seriously as a legitimate political philosophy by the corporate media in America. We are more Murdoch-bound that the Americans, and Fox-News is leading all this, so we are not without peril ourselves.

    Just stop treating these tea-bagging neo-con nut-job fascists as having any serious thing worth replying to, please? They’ll goad, for sure – but that’s their job. When there’s silence on an obvious wind-up, respect it – everyone did until your contribution.

  • Larry from St. Louis

    Now, Glenn, why would you consider me a teabagger? I make fun of those silly gooses!

  • angrysoba

    Larry,

    I think in conspiracy world everyone is part of a movement of some kind.

    As for your impersonator, I am guessing it is Arsalan. He’s always having trouble with his vowels.

  • Steve

    I have just heard something on BBC Breakfast news that made me choke on my cornflakes. Supposedly in Pakistan people are going around house to house collecting signed proxy votes for the UK elections. The most worrying thing is that

    a. These are blank forms and no party preference has been asked or put on the forms and

    b. An electoral commision spokesman says that they are not interested because no fraud has taken place.

    This is very very worrying as according to the report one town alone has had thousands of forms rounded up alone. If this is repeated all over India how many votes will be added? I smell nu labour dirty tricks at work. If anyone has family in these areas please ask if they know anything about who is doing this?

  • ingo

    The electoral commission is as much dependent on the good will of the powerstructure and party in power, as the BBc.

    They are perfectly willing to police election in some other country for the OECD, but when it comes to their own countries mal practise they sit on their backsides and whistle Dixie.

  • Suhayl Saadi

    Lawrence is back! I thought he’d got on a bus somewhere in the Mid-West. Cup of tea, Larry?

    Steve, how odd. I didn’t catch the report. How exactly were they suggesting these ‘votes’ might be added to the UK poll? Are they supposed to be postal votes? Is this ballot-box stuffing? Why go all the way to Pakistan to do it? Is this in relation to Blackburn or does it have more general application?

    This sounds like the way electoral fraud occurs in some countries. But I am wary – perhaps reflexively defensive, perhaps justifiably wary – of any ‘bad news from Pakistan’ (and it always seems to be bad news, doesn’t it?) reported in the UK media, esp. at the present time. There is an agenda on the part of some military-ISI forces in Pakistan to undermine the PPP Govt. and these forces keep releasing ‘bad news’ from Pakistan in order to undermine the govt’s international credibility. Perhaps that’s a red herring, though, and this is a purely British dynamic. Let’s check it out.

    Arsalan, tell me, are you the cyber-man? Are you ‘Wacko Jacko Straw’?

    Who is in the Tea Party, and who, the Coffee Party? And are the two part of the same old beverage company?

  • steve

    In my last comment India should read Pakistan sorry. But is it happening in India and other commonwealth countries??

  • Suhayl Saadi

    The word, ‘teabagging’ appears to have a number of different meanings, one political (current US right-wing pro-corporate ‘movement’), another, sexual.

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