Vaz Dodges National Crime Agency Meeting

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Since Keith Vaz’s appointment to the Criminal Finance Bill committee this week it has sat twice, on Tuesday and today. For some reason – to the great disappointment of hacks – Vaz has absented himself from both sessions. Guido can give readers some background as to why that might be…

Guido understands Labour whips have been told that not only is Vaz now under investigation by Scotland Yard, they have been made aware that four files regarding Vaz have been passed to the National Crime Agency. Given that the Bill committee has been taking evidence from the National Crime Agency, it would clearly be completely inappropriate for Vaz to attend this committee. If Vaz had attended he would either have to recuse himself or declare his interest. Rather than face the embarrassment, slippery Vaz has unofficially recused himself by not showing up…

BBC Reports Keith Vaz Booed in Leicester

Usually the attention-grabbing Keith Vaz is cheered by constituents when he takes to the stage at the annual Diwali light switch-on in Leicester. This year he skulked at the back and was booed by the home crowd. Vaz is clinging to his position on the Justice select committee despite potentially breaking a law he helped draft. He retains the Labour whip and still sits on the party’s NEC despite consorting with prostitutes and trying his hand at procuring drug deals. Corbyn has defended Vaz – who is the subject of a police investigation – claiming it is a “private matter”. 

Compare this to the treatment of Simon Danczuk, a single man who sexted a woman but didn’t meet her let alone break any laws, and was immediately suspended by Labour. At the time Corbyn told the press: He was suspended this morning because of recent revelations. His conduct will now be investigated”. This is a glaring double standard – the only real reason action has been taken against Danczuk but not Vaz is their differing attitudes to the leader.

As Tory MP Edward Garnier told the Leicester Mercury today: 

“This is the justice select committee – it is not the drawing pins committee or the paperclips committee. It is not appropriate for an MP under investigation by the police to be on the committee.”

Meanwhile Arron Banks says he is considering running candidates against corrupt MPs, taking inspiration from Trump’s call to “drain the swamp”. Starting in Leicester East…

Now Mirror Joins Calls for Vaz to Go

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The Labour supporting Mirror is echoing Guido nowadays when it comes to Keith Vaz:

“While a police probe into his behaviour is ongoing, shamed Labour MP Keith Vaz should not be allowed to take his place on the Commons’ Justice Committee. Officers have confirmed they are investigating allegations he discussed the buying of cocaine with two prostitutes he hired. Parliament would be brought into disrepute and public contempt if Vaz sits on this important committee while the cloud of suspicion is hanging over him.”

Guido argued as far back as September that Vaz Broke “Intent to Supply” Law. How can an MP sit on the Justice Select Committee which has oversight of the Criminal Judicial system when he is under investigation by the police? This is simply not credible…

Another petty expense fiddle has also come to light this weekend, he claimed for UK travel expenses when he was overseas, just a run of the mill week for Keith Vaz. Guido understands there will be further moves to remove the crook from the Justice Select Committee next week. Law makers can not be law breakers…

Tory MP ‘Stuck His Hands Down Man’s Pants and Tried to Kiss Him’

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Tory MP Ben Howlett is the subject of police enquiries after allegedly sexually assaulting a gay couple in a nightclub in his Bath constituency. The Sun reports allegations that:

“He pushed a man up against the wall and stuck his hands down his trousers into his pants and tried to kiss him. He then grabbed his boyfriend’s crotch.”

Westminster acquaintances of Howlett, a legendary soak, will undoubtedly be shocked to learn of such alleged antics…

Sun Journalist’s Conviction Quashed

Sun reporter Anthony France, the only journalist found guilty following the Met Police’s disastrous Operation Elveden, has had his conviction quashed. France’s ordeal lasted 1,379 days – he was convicted last May – yet today he was cleared by the Court of Appeal in a 30 second hearing. Operation Elveden, which targeted journalists and arrested over 20 Sun reporters, wasted the time of 60 police officers and cost the taxpayer £30 million, has now failed to convict a single journalist. It’s a scandal…

H/T Tom Wells

UKIP Set to Throw Woolfe Under Bus

Martin Schulz has referred Steven Woolfe and Mike Hookem to the French police after their fracas earlier this month. He says Woolfe “was subjected to an act of violence”Definitely no political motivation behind Schulz’s decision.

Nigel Farage has taken a slightly different view from his bedside vigil with Woolfe, now Nige says “There is absolutely no evidence anyone was punched at all“. A new line which is definitely nothing to do with Woolfe quitting the party. Looks like UKIP’s internal investigation will be throwing Woolfe under a bus…

BUS-TED: Labour Hit With Maximum Expenses Fraud Fine, McNicol Broke Law

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Labour has been hit with the maximum £20,000 fine after the Electoral Commission found a total of 107 invoices were missing from the party’s general election expenses return. Labour general secretary Iain McNicol was found to have committed an offence under section 82(4)(b) of PPERA in respect of the missing payments and a further offence under section 82(4)(b) in respect of the missing invoices. Labour have also been slammed for failing to declare payments in relation to their Labour Express and Labour Students bus tours, which were revealed by Guido. The Commission ruled:

“a further 49 payments relating to costs associated with the Labour Express tour and Labour Students tour, which should have been included in the party spending return”

The report is damning of McNicol:

“Mr McNicol failed, without reasonable excuse, to deliver to the Commission a campaign spending return which was a statement of all payments made by the Party in respect of its campaign for the 2015 UKPGE. In total 74 payments totalling £123,748 were missing from the Party’s 2015 UKPGE campaign spending return without a reasonable excuse. 54.

Further and in respect of the same return, Mr McNicol failed to deliver to the Commission all invoices and receipts for campaign payments of more than £200. Thirty three invoices and/or receipts were missing (in addition to those associated with the missing 74 payments), with a combined value of £34,392.”

This investigation looked at Labour’s national spend, the police are still investigating individual candidates such as Cat Smith. Despite finding at least two offences committed, over a hundred invoices and over a hundred thousand pounds missing, all the toothless Electoral Commission can do is award a small fine…

Mazher Mahmood Jailed and Sacked By The Sun

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“Following the sentencing of Mazher Mahmood today, News UK can confirm that his employment has been terminated.

Mazher was suspended after the Tulisa Contostavlos trial collapsed, pending an internal inquiry. That inquiry was superseded by the criminal process.

Mazher has led scores of successful investigations during his 25-year career with the company. His work has led to the exposure of criminality and wrongdoing. It is a source of great regret that his time with the company should end in this manner.

The previous criminal cases that have resulted from his investigations were tested by the courts or guilty pleas were entered. We are aware that the Crown Prosecution Service has reviewed some cases and understand that the Criminal Cases Review Commission is looking at whether a small number of matters should be referred back to the Court of Appeal. We await their decisions.

We have noted the threats made after Mazher’s conviction of civil claims against this company in relation to his previous work. Should such claims be brought, they will be vigorously defended.”

Mazher Mahmood has been jailed for 15 months and sacked by the Sun…

Solicitors at Galloway’s Firm Accused of £600,000 Fraud

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Employees that work for the same firm as George Galloway’s solicitors have been in court accused of falsely claiming almost £600,000 in interpreter’s legal fees. Bradford-based Chambers Solicitors are notorious for demanding up to £5,000 for allegedly libellous tweets against Galloway, now three of the solicitors who work for the firm are in hot water themselves. […] Read the rest

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Minister Warned CCHQ About Rape Arrest Aide

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CCHQ were warned months ago that they should sack Sam Armstrong, the Tory aide who has been arrested over an alleged rape in the Commons. Back in June Rob Halfon appealed to Lord Feldman to remove Armstrong from his job with South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay.[…] Read the rest

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Natalie McGarry Charged in Connection With Fraud

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Suspended SNP MP Natalie McGarry has been charged by the police in connection with alleged fraud offencesOch.

UPDATE: The charges are for embezzlement and breach of trust.[…] Read the rest

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Top Corbynista Convicted For Role in Bank Attack

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A top Corbynista can be revealed as a convicted criminal who was given a suspended sentence for his role in a violent bank attack. Aaron Bastani, who runs Jeremy Corbyn’s favoured ‘new media’ outlet Novara Media, has had a string of brushes with the law.[…] Read the rest

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Scotland Yard “Assessing” Vaz Allegations

Scotland Yard’s “Special Inquiry Team” say they are to “assess and identify what criminal offences – if any – may have been committed” by Keith Vaz. Developing…[…] Read the rest

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Parliamentary Crime Scene

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A co-conspirator calls Guido with shocking news:

“The Members Only gents on the Library corridor is ‘a crime scene’ and closed. Somebody has graffitied ‘Vaz loves man bum’ in a cubicle. They are cleaning it off.”

In the MPs-only posh toilets?[…] Read the rest

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Vaz Broke “Intent to Supply” Law

moda

Lawmakers cannot be law breakers. This is even more crucial when it comes to being chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee which influences the drafting of criminal laws.

Jeremy Corbyn said on Sunday that he didn’t believe that Keith Vaz had broken the law so it was a “private matter”.[…] Read the rest

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Bercow Knew Vaz Was Under Police Investigation

Keith Vaz was under police investigation over year ago on suspicion of financial corruption and historic allegations of under-age sex. Speaker Bercow was informed of this and fellow MPs demanded – Andrew Bridgen in writing – that he step down from his position on the Home Affair Select Committee.[…] Read the rest

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