Published: 13:40, 13 March 2017 |
Updated: 16:57, 13 March 2017
"The public as a whole must have confidence in the electoral system which you have so seriously undermined" - Judge Philip Statman
Uncles was jailed for a further 14 days for breaching his bail by not appearing on the first day of his trial. Sixteen days on a tagged curfew will count towards his sentence.
Judge Statman said Uncles was an experienced electoral election campaigner with a considerable knowledge and understanding of the weaknesses that existed in the system, particularly the lack of power returning officers had when scrutinising election papers submitted on behalf of candidates.
“The process is historic,” he said. “It is outdated, it is subject to abuse and desperately in need of reform.”
It was accepted that Uncles’ dishonesty did not affect election results and there was no financial gain.
“Your motivation was clear,” said the judge, who described Uncles as highly intelligent. “You committed this offence to highlight and give publicity to the party, of which you were a leading member.
“The more candidates you put up at local elections, the greater the publicity that is attached to the aims and policies of the English Democrats. You have subverted the democratic process.”
Two names falsely put forward were those of a couple in their 80s.
“The last thing they would ever have considered would be standing in an election,” said Judge Statman.
The first hint of remorse he had shown was to admit breaching his bail.
“You had an absolute right to seek a trial by jury,” he continued. “That is part of the democratic process. That same democratic process has by way of the verdicts of this jury convicted you of those crimes now.”
Uncles “led this court a merry dance” by being in the north of England and delaying the trial when he should have been at court.
“Great expense was done to the public purse as a result. It seems to me you were as obstructive as you could be until you realised your efforts to evade justice were not going anywhere.
“It seems to me, looking at the offences, there is only one way of dealing with you and that is to send you to prison.
“I bear in mind you are not going to do this again, but the public as a whole must have confidence in the electoral system which you have so seriously undermined.”
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