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Guilty: Party agent who conned voters using fake signatures for candidates in local council election

PUBLISHED: 08:00 18 October 2020

Candidate nominations fraud uncovered in 2018 local council election. Picture: Mike Brooke

Candidate nominations fraud uncovered in 2018 local council election. Picture: Mike Brooke

Mike Brooke

A political campaign manager who duped voters in the run-up to local council elections in east London has been convicted by a jury for faking signatures on 29 candidates’ nomination forms and pretending to be from other parties.

Names of voters fraudulantly used for candidate nominations, police discover. Picture: Mike BrookeNames of voters fraudulantly used for candidate nominations, police discover. Picture: Mike Brooke

People on the electoral register in Shoreditch and Hackney were tricked by Diana Danescu, a 28-year-old from South Woodford, who was found guilty of 16 offences under the 1983 Representation of the People Act.

The Tory “rogue campaign manager” hoodwinked electors in 2018 into thinking she represented Labour, Greens and even the local authority, while falsely using their names on nomination forms to support her own party candidates.

Her conviction follows a police investigation involving 32 prosecution witnesses giving evidence during a five-week trial which ended at Southwark Crown Court on Friday, September 11.

Election agent convicted who rigged 2018 council candidate nominations. Picture: ArchantElection agent convicted who rigged 2018 council candidate nominations. Picture: Archant

“Diana Danescu deliberately misled the electors,” Det Con Jim Morrison said after her conviction.

“She submitted names of electors who hadn’t signed the nomination papers.”

Danescu was canvassing for nominations while employed by Tory campaign HQ as borough campaign manager—but acted “in a rogue capacity”, the court heard.

Agent gets 6-month suspeneded sentence for candidate nominations fraud. Picture: Mike BrookeAgent gets 6-month suspeneded sentence for candidate nominations fraud. Picture: Mike Brooke

She acted as agent for 29 Conservative candidates using false information about the party she represented.

Nomination forms were submitted to the town hall returning officer with names of people who hadn’t agreed to nominate her candidates, the police investigation discovered.

Danescu, from The Drive, South Woodford, got a six-month suspended sentence, 200 hours’ community service and slapped with £2,000 costs and court surcharge.


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