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MP Amess speaks out over "lax" electoral system
9:18am Monday 31st December 2012 in News
A TORY MP spoke out in the Commons over the “lax” electoral system after a Leigh man registered five fake voters at his two-bedroom flat.
David Amess, MP for Southend West, told parliamentary colleagues about Terry Davis, 59, who sought to expose holes in the electoral system.
Mr Davis was voluntarily interviewed by police after registering five false names as voters at his Leighton Avenue flat.
Speaking in the Commons, Mr Amess said: “The census was obviously not checked to verify the residents in the property.
“We are both anxious about what appears to be a very lax system.”
The retired market trader faces an anxious wait as he is yet to hear if he will face charges for electoral fraud, more than seven weeks after he was interviewed by police at Leigh police station. Mr Davis said: “It’s a bit of a strain over Christmas. I would have preferred it if it had gone to court, then the council would have been able to answer for its shortcomings.
“At the moment it is not. It’s like shooting the messenger.”
Southend Council sent Mr Davis five polling cards for the police and crime commissioner elections last month without checking if the five names he registered were real.
Mr Davis had no intention of using the voting cards to vote illegally and handed them to the Echo.
The Crown Prosecution Service will decide whether to take Mr Davis to court, based on whether the evidence police gather is likely to secure a conviction and if a prosecution would be in the public interest.
If convicted, he would face a fine of up to £5,000 and up to six months in prison.
The police were unable to confirm whether the investigation into Mr Davis’s actions was ongoing or had been dropped.