Socialist Worker

Formal investigation into Nazi BNP accounts

by Viv Smith
Issue No. 2197

The Electoral Commission (EC) has announced a formal investigation into the Nazi British National Party's (BNP) accounts.

The EC has already fined the BNP £1,000 for submitting its accounts nearly six months late.

It has also been told to provide more information about its income.

The EC launched a case review three months ago and has now moved on to a formal investigation.

This follows comments by the registered independent auditors, Silver & Co, who found that the financial statements submitted did not 'give a true and fair view of the state of the party's affairs at December 31 2008'.

They added, 'In our opinion it cannot be said that the accounts comply with the requirements of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000, as adequate records have not been made available.'

Just before the Euro elections BNP leader Nick Griffin claimed that his party stood opposed to gravy train politics.

But he has claimed £200,000 expenses as a Euro MP in 2009 on top of his £82,000 MEP salary, some £18,000 in “consultancy fees” and £10,000 in “agent fees”.

After criticism for not being open about his expenses, Griffin published a version of his claims which included:

  • £175,000 in “staff costs” for eight employees.
  • £31,000 for “office management costs”, including an office in his home. This included £2,800 on “furnishings” and over £4,000 on “repair, maintenance and security”.

He is yet to reveal how much he has claimed of his £270-a-day MEP's subsistence allowance, worth £40,000 tax-free every year, or how much he has claimed for travel.

Fellow Nazi BNP MEP Andrew Brons has not published any details of his expenses.

Concerns were raised after an investigation by the Mirror newspaper which showed Griffin and Brons using their expenses to fund the BNPs UK operation.

Those on Griffin and Bron's Europe payroll include:

  • John Walker: BNP Deputy press spokesman. Lives in Wales. Standing in Alyn & Deeside
  • Martin Wingfield: BNP Communication officer for leaders. Standing in Workington, Cumbria.
  • Tina Wingfield: Runs Griffin's office. Standing in Salford, Greater Manchester, against Hazel Blears.
  • Chris Beverley: BNP Yorkshire organiser and candidate in Morley & Outwood, top target in Yorks.
  • Clive Jefferson: BNP North West organiser. Standing in Copeland, Cumbria, in the election.
  • Martin Reynolds: Griffin's personal minder.

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Article information

Thu 15 Apr 2010, 12:39 BST
Issue No. 2197
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