November 26, 2021 4.40 pm

Lincolnshire Conservatives vow to move on after disgraced ex-council leader jailed

“Justice has been served,” the association said

The Gainsborough Constituency Conservative Association said justice was served when former council leader Giles McNeill was jailed for 14 months for fraud offences this week.

The former Tory council leader admitted to having a gambling problem after pocketing almost £30,000 from local Conservative associations.

Giles McNeill, 39, was Conservative leader of West Lindsey District Council from May 2019 to September 2020, as well as previously being an electoral agent for long serving Conservative MP Sir Edward Leigh.

At Lincoln Crown Court on November 25 he admitted eight theft, fraud and forgery offences totalling £29,770.

The court hear how McNeill paid dozens of fraudulent cheques into his own bank account and kept members payments from 22 party fundraising events over a five year period.

This included paying over £4,000 meant for constituency association coffers into his own bank account the day after Boris Johnson was guest speaker at a Tory party fundraiser in March 2018.

A statement released to The Lincolnite on behalf of the Gainsborough Constituency Conservative Association on Friday said: “This has been a sad and stressful time for everyone concerned but we are pleased that justice has been served.

“The behaviour of Giles McNeill is not a reflection of our association as a whole. Once irregularities were found we immediately acted and contacted the police.

“The message is clear that we will not tolerate dishonesty in our representatives. We are now looking forward positively and working to overcome both the reputational and financial damage we have suffered as a result of his actions.”

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