Monday, November 12, 2007

Conservative candidate Haroon Rashid

A Conservative parliamentary candidate and two former Tory councillors will appear in court this week in connection with a suspected vote-rigging conspiracy that was uncovered by The Times.

They are among seven men accused of electoral fraud following a lengthy police investigation into alleged malpractice in Bradford, mostly relating to the use of postal ballots.

The criminal inquiry was prompted by an article in The Times that exposed postal voting irregularities in the Bradford West constituency during the 2005 general election campaign.

Those charged include Haroon Rashid, 37, from Buckinghamshire, who stood as the unsuccessful Tory candidate in Bradford West.

Mr Rashid has been a member of the Conservative Party for more than 15 years and an active campaigner for increased Asian representation.

In the run-up to the 2005 poll he was photographed with then Tory leader Michael Howard and other leading Conservatives, including Baroness Thatcher.

Also due to appear before Bradford magistrates on Wednesday are two former Conservative councillors in the city, Jamshed Khan, 53, and Reis Khan, 38.

Both lost the party whip when they were arrested during the police inquiry.


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