Police search Mid and East Antrim council offices in Ballymena amid misconduct probe

Mid and East Antrim Borough Council offices have been searched by police as part of an investigation into suspected misconduct in public office.

Wednesday, 20th October 2021, 10:30 pm
A spokesperson said the council was "fully assisting" police with inquiries

The police visit to the council offices took place yesterday in Ballymena, a spokesperson for the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) confirmed.

It related to suspected misconduct in public office, as well as suspected offences under the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

A spokesperson for Mid and East Antrim Borough Council said that it was “fully assisting” the PSNI with its inquiries.

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They added: “As this is an ongoing investigation, Council is unable to comment further at this time.”

Traditional Unionist Voice councillor Timothy Gaston called the situation a “shambles”.

He posted on Twitter: “I am left dumbfounded that no communication has been provided to elected members explaining the visible PSNI activity in our HQ.”

SDLP councillor Eugene Reid said: “This sorry episode is the latest in a long line of incidents that have dragged the name of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council through the mud and I have contacted senior council officials to request an immediate update following this raid.

“While other councils are focussed on delivering public services, Mid and East Antrim has been mired in scandal in recent months including the Larne Port debacle, demands for outside bodies to come in and run the council and a large proportion of staff complaining about bullying and harassment. I hope the PSNI investigation brings matters to a conclusion and that the council can get back to what matters, which is working for local people.”

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