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Not before time the Electoral Commission is coming under pressure over their disgraceful failure to tackle voter fraud in Tower Hamlets. The police are investigating some specific allegations (sent in by six Labour Labour councillors) but it is obvious that fraud is widespread and that there has ben no serious effort to address the problem.

Judge Richard Mawrey, disqualified six Birmingham councillors in 2005, told BBC Radio 4's World at One:

"Particularly in local elections, where a small number of votes will make a considerable difference, then the opportunities for fraud are enormous, the chances of detection very small, and a relatively modest amount of fraud will guarantee you win the election."

Local Government Minister Grant Shapps says:

"What the Electoral Commission has done has not been enough. There is a sense of complacency that has run through this."

"If the election outcome is marginal, then I think people will be extremely concerned it has taken so long for this issue in Tower Hamlets to be referred to the police.

"This is obviously an operational decision for the police, but I would imagine that they would be interested in looking at whether there should be a policeman stationed at perhaps each of the sensitive polling stations in Tower Hamlets in order to make sure that there is no intimidation."

Today's Evening Standard has splashed on the scandal.

Cllr Peter Golds has more details below.

39 comments for: Shapps demands action over Tower Hamlets voter fraud