In 2015 the Government asked the Former Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sir Eric Pickles MP, to contemplate the present electoral system and to reflect on what modifications could be made to give greater security to the present system.

On the 27th December the government not only released their response to Sir Eric Pickles’ report but additionally a number of changes to be introduced to combat electoral fraud.

The report of Sir Eric Pickles titled “Securing the Ballot” stated “My fear now is that such a trust-based system is becoming no longer tenable. To retain the integrity of our democracy, we need to introduce more rigour into the processes we use, to see more clarity and proactivity from institutions such as the police in upholding the system. We need to act now to avoid further major instances of fraud taking place.”

The report concluded that measures were required to eradicate fraud within the electoral system and commented upon the 50 recommendations put forward by Sir Eric Pickles. The measures to be put in place include the use of identification in polling stations. Pilots for such ID polling stations will be conducted in the local government elections in May 2018. Such measure will require each voter to provide identification before they are allowed to vote. If the pilots prove to be successful it is likely that such measures will be used for general elections. Whilst a list of councils to be suggested for the pilot scheme has yet to finalised, the Electoral Commission has highlighted eighteen councils that are susceptible to electoral fraud.

Other measures are to be considered as highlighted by Sir Eric Pickles including greater powers to be given to electoral officials and the police to combat intimidation and false registrations.

Despite no follow up prosecution in respect of the Tower Hamlets judgement, the findings of the High Court included corruption and illegal practices.

Farleys specialise in cases of electoral fraud and have experience of high profile cases involving UK government elections. Whether a case involves alleged instances of misinformation, postal vote manipulation, intimidation or vote buying, our solicitors possess all the necessary knowledge and experience to provide clear legal advice, ensuring you are fully aware of your rights.

For more information regarding UK election law, electoral fraud or any other aspect of serious fraud legislation, contact Farleys today on 0845 287 0939 or alternatively, email us and we will get back to you as soon as possible.