Squad’s vow over election fraudsters

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Fraud busters are teaming up to stop vote-rigging in next month’s elections.

West Yorkshire Police is warning that a robust stance is being taken to election fraud.

It follows complaints of general election fraud in Park Ward by the Conservatives after last May’s elections in Calderdale.

A police investigation followed costing thousands of pounds but it found no evidence to support the allegations.

This year, experts from the force, CPS and the Electoral Commission are working together to ensure the polls run fairly.

Assistant Chief Constable Jawaid Akhtar said: “Any allegations of electoral fraud will be treated extremely seriously.

“We are working closely with returning officers to share information and to identify any suspicious activity.

“The suggestion that electoral fraud is taking place has the potential to undermine people’s faith in the voting system and therefore to undermine communities.

“Any allegation of an attempt to cheat the system will be thoroughly investigated and appropriate action taken.

“I want anyone who is aware of any suspicious activity, or who feels someone is attempting to unfairly influence them to contact their local returning officer in the first instance.”

Returning officers may then decide to refer some matters to the police for further investigation.

Police say anyone wanting to make an allegation of electoral fraud should have evidence and be willing to make a statement. Officers will not take on unsubstantiated, third-party reports.