BNP European election leaflets ‘illegal,’ say police

Promotional literature lacked legally required imprint

THE BNP’s European election campaign has been thrown into disarray after promotional leaflets posted through thousands of letterboxes in Nick Griffin’s own constituency were found to be illegal, it was announced yesterday.

Police are investigating days before polling day after a number of residents in the north west found the BNP’s EU election campaign leaflets did not meet basic Electoral Commission guidelines as they had no imprint. An imprint must be included on all printed campaign material such as posters and leaflets, the EC guidelines for candidates standing in the European parliamentary elections state. 

The name and address of the printer, the promoter and any person on behalf of whom the material is being published must be featured on the imprint.

“An imprint must, by law, be added to the campaign material to show who is responsible for its production. It helps to ensure the campaign is transparent,” the EC’s guidelines say.

Far-right party leader Mr Griffin is one of eight BNP candidates standing in the region.

The BNP’s double-sided campaign leaflet for the north-west European parliamentary constituency boasts the party will commit to “banning the Burqa” and “stopping immigration.”

It states: “Everybody knows that the only political party you can trust to stop immigration is the BNP.”

And underneath a pledge to support “British jobs for British workers” the party says: “Local people must be given jobs before immigrants every time.”

Cumbria police confirmed they are investigating.

The maximum penalty for breaching these guidelines, which is a criminal offence, is a £5,000 fine.

Birkenhead resident Sarah Evans, who received one of the leaflets through her letterbox, told the Star: “It’s bad enough that this filth lands on my doormat in the first place.

“But the BNP styles itself as the party of law and order — clearly for everyone else and not them.

“So now we have the whiff of hypocrisy on top of the stench of its racism.”

Hope Not Hate’s Matthew Collins said this is not the first time the BNP has made the error, having done so in 2010 general election when it blamed the printers.

He said: “This just shows the demise in competence and ability in the party.

“The fact remains that the BNP is finished regardless of what it puts on its leaflets.”

When the Morning Star asked BNP press officer Simon Darby whether it was another problem with its printers, he hung up the phone before spluttering: “Do you honestly expect me to speak to you? 

“Are you for real?”

From  The Morning Star 19.05.14. Report by Will Stone

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