Saturday, April 28, 2007

Police arrest Conservative councillor over corruption allegation

Disturbing news from Portsmouth via The News (dated 25th April) and the Liberal Democrat Voice. Obviously the man is innocent until proven guilty. Councillors are not often held overnight by the police, as this Conservative councillor has been:

Tory Jezz Baker was arrested at 1.30pm yesterday after a month-long police investigation.

It is understood to be alleged that Cllr Baker, who sits on the city council planning committee, took money to support planning applications.

Police have been investigating since an allegation was made by a member of the public in March.

Cllr Baker was yesterday in Romford, Essex, visiting his baby daughter, but returned to Portsmouth by arrangement with officers where he was arrested on suspicion of corruption in a public office.

Police can hold him for 24 hours without charge which can be extended to 36 hours with approval of a superintendent. Any longer needs the support of magistrates.

He was then taken to a station outside the city to be interviewed.

He was still being held this morning.

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