My good friend The General conveys what could be an most fortuitous happenstance for the BNP in his locale with yet another revelation in that political turd that simply will not flush, the fraudulent claims scandal. Fortuitous because it is unquestionable that a by-election will be called. The British National Party missed out there by a mere whisker last May. The following article appears in the Northampton Chronicle.
Something definitely 'Fishy' about councillor Mullet...
A fraudster and councillor who illegally claimed more than £13,000 in tax discounts and housing benefits has been jailed and sacked from Daventry District Council.
Terry Mullett, aged 54, of Portland Close, Southbrook, in Daventry, was found guilty of four counts of dishonesty making false representations, relating to claims between July 2005 and May 2008.
He was jailed for 18 weeks and immediately removed from his post as an independent councillor for the Drayton Ward, where he had served the same council he had been defrauding. The authority discovered during the sentencing that Mullett had previous convictions for similar offences, despite him signing a declaration stating he was not disqualified from election.
Magistrates in Daventry heard Mullet fraudulently claimed £2,348 in council tax benefits and more than £11,000 in housing benefits, which he will now have to repay. A spokesman for Daventry District Council, which brought the prosecution against Mullett, said: "The trial followed a year-long investigation by Daventry District Council's fraud investigation team, which was undertaken in accordance with standard procedures.
"Under the Local Government Act 1972, Mr Mullett was immediately disqualified as an Independent Daventry district councillor for Drayton Ward. "During the sentencing, it emerged that Mullett had several previous convictions for dishonesty committed between 1976 and 2002. In order to become a district councillor, candidates have to sign a nomination form to declare they are not disqualified from being elected."
Following a brief hearing at the court yesterday, magistrates sentenced him to 18 weeks' imprisonment and ordered him to pay back the amount he had claimed – a total of £13,475.92. He was also ordered to pay costs mounting to almost £4,000.
Mullett, a former Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator, was first elected to Daventry District Council as a Conservative in 2007. After that, he left the party and decided instead to stand as an independent candidate.