MP loses brownie points! Former Coronation Street actress was probed by police amid claims she bribed voters with sweet treats
- Tracy Brabin had been pictured on campaign trail with boxes of brownies
- Claims she bribed voters with the chocolate goodies were investigated by police
- Miss Brabin, who was a Coronation Street actress, is MP for Batley and Spen
- She is now standing as Labour’s candidate for West Yorkshire mayor
- West Yorkshire Police said it found Miss Brabin had not committed an offence
Claims that a Coronation Street actress turned Labour MP bribed voters with brownies were investigated by police.
Tracy Brabin had been pictured on the campaign trail with specially branded boxes of the chocolate goodies.
Miss Brabin, who is already the MP for Batley and Spen, is standing as Labour’s candidate for West Yorkshire mayor.
But Tom Gordon, a Liberal Democrat member of Wakefield Council, complained that Miss Brabin had been ‘out and about with boxes of brownies… that say “Vote Labour” on them’.
Tracy Brabin had been pictured on the campaign trail with boxes of brownies and claims she bribed voters with the chocolate goodies were investigated by police
He asked West Yorkshire Police to consider whether she has broken electoral law.
However, a Labour source said the brownies were only available to party activists as a thank you for their hard work campaigning.
And West Yorkshire Police last night said it had found Miss Brabin had not committed an offence.
Kerron Cross, a local Labour candidate, posted a picture on Twitter of a box he had received.
He wrote: ‘Loving the Vote Labour chocolate brownies we were given by Tracy Brabin today. Whole family loved it. And yes, vote Labour kids.’
A Labour source said the brownies were only available to party activists as a thank you for their hard work campaigning and West Yorkshire Police last night said it had found Miss Brabin had not committed an offence
Electoral Commission rules state a person is guilty of ‘treating’ if they ‘directly or indirectly give or provide any food, drink, entertainment or provision to corruptly influence any voter to vote or refrain from voting’.
Anyone guilty of treating can be fined and jailed for up to a year under the Representation of the People Act 1983. During the 2015 general election campaign, a Ukip candidate was reported to police after he handed out sausage rolls and Jaffa Cakes to voters. Kim Rose attended an interview at a police station but did not face action.
Miss Brabin, who played Tricia Armstrong in Coronation Street, raised eyebrows last year after she wore an off-the-shoulder dress in the Commons. West Yorkshire Police looked into the brownie claims.
And a spokesman last night said: ‘West Yorkshire Police can confirm that after an investigation following the circulation of social media posts and a direct complaint re electoral matters that no offences have been recorded.’
The graphic shows Labour’s poll position in the upcoming elections at the end of this week