Beds, Herts & Bucks

Milton Keynes rapist taxi row councillor up for election

Taxi drivers queuing Image copyright Notts TV
Image caption Robin Bradburn stood on two committees that allowed rapist Nadeem Kiani to drive a taxi in Milton Keynes

A former councillor who stood by his decision to allow a serial rapist to get a licence to drive a taxi is standing for election.

Liberal Democrat Robin Bradburn had lost his seat on Milton Keynes Council before details of Nadeem Ahmed Kiani's convictions emerged in August 2014.

But Milton Keynes Taxi Association said he should not have been selected as a candidate in Bradwell.

Mr Bradburn has refused to comment on his role in the affair.

The council revoked Kiani's licence last year after it was revealed he had been given a private hire licence by the licensing committee in 2011.

A second committee lifted a suspension on his licence in 2012, despite Thames Valley Police having written to the authority giving more details of Kiani's convictions for raping and assaulting prostitutes in London, in 1994.

Councillors Stuart Burke and Gladstone McKenzie resigned from the council's licensing committee as a result. Labour's Mr McKenzie has also stood down from the council.

Subhan Shafiq, who had vouched for Kiani as a friend in 2011, resigned as mayor in August. He then quit as a councillor when the council released a report into the affair in November.

Mr Bradburn had sat on both of the committees, before he lost his seat in the Bradwell ward in May 2014, three months before the scandal broke.

As a result, he escaped much of the media inquiries that followed.

Image copyright Google
Image caption Robin Bradburn told Milton Keynes Council he was confident the right decisions had made over Nadeem Kiani

When asked by the BBC if he would like to comment as to why he had allowed Kiani a licence, he said: "Not at the moment, no."

The council's report revealed Mr Bradburn told investigators "everyone is saying [Kiani] was a risk but he has not done anything in the 14 years since his release".

He also told the council he was "confident the right decisions were made. So were the other members, but their leaders told them to apologise".

'Unacceptable and appalling'

But Dennis Edwards, chairman of the taxi association said it was "unacceptable" Mr Bradburn was standing for election again.

He said: "What he did was appalling. Why would anyone want to vote for someone who put them at risk?"

Cari Mitchell, of the English Collective of Prostitutes, condemned Mr Bradburn's decision to give Kiani a taxi licence.

She said: "It is this blatant devaluing of sex workers lives which makes us vulnerable to violence."

Mr Bradburn will stand in Bradwell against Rachel Cadger from the Green Party, Conservative Max Chaudhry, Labour's Rachel Pallett, Katie Simpson from the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition and UKIP's Cathy Kitchiner.

Lib Dem Mr Burke is seeking re-election in Shenley Brook End ward, where he will stand against Labour's Binta Bah-Pokawa, Conservative Hiten Ganatra, the Green's Michael Gurner and Geoffrey Winter of UKIP.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites