London

Lutfur Rahman loses High Court appeal against election ban

Lutfur Rahman Image copyright PA
Image caption Lutfur Rahman was banned from standing for public office for five years in 2015 by an Election Court

The former Labour mayor of Tower Hamlets in east London has lost a High Court appeal against a five year ban from standing for office.

Lutfur Rahman was barred after being found guilty of corrupt and illegal practices by a specialist court.

He had hoped to overturn the ban after being told he would not face criminal charges due to "insufficient evidence".

His lawyers argued it would be wrong to allow the 2015 ban to stand in light of the decision not to bring charges.

Mr Rahman had already failed in one attempt to challenge the ruling of the Election Commissioner Richard Mawrey made two years ago, following an Election Court trial in London.

Four voters took legal action against Mr Rahman, under the provisions of the Representation of The People Act, in 2015.

Lawyers for those voters made a series of allegations, including "personation" in postal voting and at polling stations, and ballot paper tampering.

Mr Rahman had said there was "little, if any" evidence of wrongdoing against him.

But Mr Mawrey said evidence aired at the Election Court trial had revealed an "alarming state of affairs" in Tower Hamlets.

He said his ruling meant the 2014 Tower Hamlets mayoral election was void.

The election was re-run and was won by Labour's John Biggs.

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