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Lib Dem deputy Jo Swinson facing police probe over election spending

2 min read

Liberal Democrat deputy leader Jo Swinson is to be investigated by the police over her general election campaign spending.

The East Dunbartonshire MP and former government minister is thought to have been reported by one of her constituents last week.

Ms Swinson retook her seat in June’s snap election after she was ousted by the SNP’s John Nicolson in 2015. 

The party confirmed police had begun looking into her spending, but said they had “full confidence” that she would be cleared of any wrongdoing.

A spokesman for the Liberal Democrats said: "All expenditure in this election was apportioned correctly and clearly identified in our election return which is a matter of public record."

He added that the move was likely an “SNP tactic”, citing an earlier probe into MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton’s spending where the Crown office later threw out his case.

"As in Edinburgh Western, we have full confidence that there is no substance to this complaint,” they added.

"We make no apology for fighting as hard as we could to stop the SNP in their tracks. The people of East Dunbartonshire made a clear choice when they rejected the SNP in June.

"This is a classic SNP tactic when they have lost an election. Last year they wasted 13 months of police time with their complaint about the election in Edinburgh Western, and the police found there was no case to answer."

In August Ms Swinson was under pressure to explain her official declaration after it came in at just £210 under the official limit, but that a further 93,000 leaflets at a cost of £2,700 were undelivered.

The party said a further £4,040 was used for national spending to promote the party rather than her individual candidacy.

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