Tory Fraud: Semi-Independent Scrutineer Appointed

Guido had not forgotten the chaos he caused down Wandsworth way this summer by revealing more than £50,000 in suspected fraudulent payments to the local Conservative agent. Two years after concerns were first raised internally, an independent investigation has been called and the suspect – Councillor Robert Morritt – has been suspended. The details of the inquiry have been released today:

The Conservative Party in Wandsworth and Wimbledon is establishing an inquiry into allegations appearing in the media concerning accounting irregularities during the period (2006-10) when Robert Morritt was in its employment.   The local Conservative Party is organised in four Conservative Associations in Battersea, Putney, Tooting and Wimbledon.  These Associations pool resources in the Wandsworth & Wimbledon Conservative Group.  Rob Morritt was employed by its predecessor organisation, known as the Wandsworth Conservative Group.

Cllr Ray Puddifoot, the leader of Hillingdon Council, has been asked to: Conduct an independent review of the professional activities, including recent media allegations, of Robert Morritt during his employment with the Wandsworth Conservative Group. The review should be thorough, evidence based and should make observations, draw conclusions and recommendations as appropriate. Cllr Puddifoot will report his findings to the Group Management Committee of the Wandsworth & Wimbledon Conservative Group, who will then make a detailed public statement covering the allegations that have been made.  Cllr Puddifoot will conclude his investigations as soon as practically possible but the importance of a thorough investigation precludes a set time limit.

 Cllr Puddifoot has been Leader of Hillingdon Council for 12 years and is a past Treasurer of the Uxbridge Conservative Association. He is by profession a Chartered Accountant and served for many years, on a voluntary basis, as a General Commissioner of Revenue and Customs.  He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants and Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.  Cllr Puddifoot has no previous connection with the Wandsworth or Wimbledon Conservative Associations.

A professional outside auditor would have made more sense, especially given that elements Conservative Party have already systematically covered this story up already. Two investigations already compiled have found over £50,000 of unaccounted funds, yet they were ignored by Wandsworth Conservatives – instead they promoted Morritt. Guido has offered to make all the evidence he has in his possession, and it’s a lot, available to Mr Puddifoot.

He looks forward to hearing from him…

Read the full story here.

Tip offs: 0709 284 0531

Quote of the Day

Trump jokes about media bias…

“The media is even more biased against me than ever before. You want the proof? Michelle Obama gives a speech and everyone loves it. It’s fantastic. They think she’s absolutely great. My Wife Melania gives the exact same speech! And people get on her case! And I don’t get it! I don’t know Why!”

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.


Prezza For Jezza Prezza For Jezza
Man On Sun’s Front Page Is Not Interpreter Man On Sun’s Front Page Is Not Interpreter
UKIP Leadership Latest UKIP Leadership Latest
Was it Davis or Davies? Was it Davis or Davies?
Multi-Millionaire’s “Hipster Begging” Multi-Millionaire’s “Hipster Begging”
Six Figures For Baroness Scotland’s Friends Six Figures For Baroness Scotland’s Friends
Sadiq Tree Policy Chop Sadiq Tree Policy Chop
Marmite Round-Up Marmite Round-Up
Watch Theresa May Burn Emily Thornberry Watch Theresa May Burn Emily Thornberry
Cameron: Brexit Means Leaving Single Market Cameron: Brexit Means Leaving Single Market
Runners & Riders Runners & Riders
Shami Stories Round-Up Shami Stories Round-Up
Masked Glitterballs Masked Glitterballs
Momentum Kids Momentum Kids
Slug-on-Thames for Parliament? Slug-on-Thames for Parliament?
John Cleese’s Spectator Column So Bad It Was Canned After One Article John Cleese’s Spectator Column So Bad It Was Canned After One Article
No Colleagues Attend Remain MP’s Brexit Whinge No Colleagues Attend Remain MP’s Brexit Whinge