Liverpool

Bailed Liverpool council boss Ged Fitzgerald resigns

Ged Fitzgerald Image copyright Liverpool City Council
Image caption Ged Fitzgerald was one of four men arrested by police

A council boss arrested in a probe into suspected financial irregularities has resigned with immediate effect.

Liverpool City Council's chief executive Ged Fitzgerald was held with three others last year on suspicion of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and witness intimidation.

The investigation relates to Lancashire County Council where Mr Fitzgerald, who is still on bail, was chief executive.

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson said he had accepted his resignation.

Mr Fitzgerald had stepped aside from his role the day after his arrest on 22 May 2017.

He also relinquished his post as interim head of paid service for the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority pending the investigation.

In a statement, Mr Anderson said: "Ged Fitzgerald has resigned from his post as CEO of Liverpool City Council with immediate effect.

"I can confirm that he wrote to me this morning and tendered his resignation, which the council has accepted."

The leader of the Conservatives at Lancashire County Council Geoff Driver was also arrested along with Mr Fitzgerald. All four men held in the inquiry remain on bail until 22 May.

Image caption The leader of Lancashire County Council Geoff Driver was also arrested with Mr Fitzgerald

Lancashire Police said the arrests were made on suspicion of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and witness intimidation, but not on suspicion of fraud.

The investigation, launched in 2013, relates to allegations of financial irregularities over the tendering of a £5m contract with One Connect Ltd, a joint venture between the council and BT to run some services.

Lancashire Police said there was no update on the investigation.

Mr Fitzgerald took up the chief executive post at Liverpool City Council in 2011.

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