Thomas Bridge 01 May 2015

Theft of thousands of election ballots forces council re-think

Hundreds of thousands of ballot papers have been stolen from a van delivering them to a constituency on the south coast.

Eastbourne BC is now reprinting 130,000 ballot papers on different coloured paper to the original batch in a bid to combat fraud.

However concerns have been raised that postal vote ballot papers will still hold the original colours, potentially creating issues when they are returned on 7 May.

Yet the council emphasised such ballots would be returned with paperwork and go through a ‘rigorous scanning process’.

In a statement, the local authority said: ‘We have taken advice from the Electoral Commission and are confident that the steps we have implemented will ensure the accurate and successful completion of the elections.’

The Metropolitan Police are now investigating the theft, which took place in the London area.

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