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PSNI decision to drop Electoral Complaint smacks of political decision

22 August, 2006

Sinn Féin National Director of Elections Pat Doherty MP today said that the decision taken by the PSNI not to pursue a compliant of electoral malpractice made after bogus Alliance party leaflets were distributed at the last election urging support for the UUP, smacked of an attempt by the PSNI to protect parties linked to the new policing establishment.

Mr Doherty said:

"It is beyond any doubt that these leaflets were bogus and were a pretty shallow attempt at trying to bolster the flagging fortunes of the UUP. What is also beyond any doubt is the fact that the electoral laws have been breached otherwise the Electoral Commission would not have referred this matter to the PSNI at the conclusion of their investigation.

"The decision by the PSNI not to pursue further the complaint referred to them by the Electoral Commission smacks of a political decision taken to protect one of the parties lined up as part of the new policing establishment here.

"If people are to have confidence in the electoral process it is important that all of the parties stick to the rules. In the past other parties have been found guilty of electoral malpractice in the courts which is the correct course of action. In this case it seems that the PSNI have intervened to ensure that such a case would not be pursued. The result of this decision will be a dent in the confidence of the electorate in the integrity of the entire electoral process." ENDS

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