Labour, Lib Dems and Britain First fined by Electoral Commission for breaking election law

Labour and the Lib Dems have been warned by the Electoral Commission that they need to comply with electoral law after being fined for multiple offences.

Four investigations carried out by the democratic watchdog concluded that Labour was guilty of five offences and one contravention of the rules and handed a fine of £400. Meanwhile, the Lib Dems were found guilty of four offences of late reporting of donations and fined £350.

Labour was reprimanded for a failure to notify a change in accounting unit treasurer, and four late reported donations; and clate reporting of its Ipswich constituency party accounts.

Starmer and Davey lead Labour and the Lib Dems respectively (Getty)
Starmer and Davey lead Labour and the Lib Dems respectively (Getty)

The far right Britain First was fined £1,500 for failing to file its accounts for 2022 with the fine increased to £1,875.

Louise Edwards, the commission’s director of regulation and digital transformation, said: “The laws we enforce are there to ensure transparency in the finances of political parties and to increase public confidence in our system, so it’s important that parties comply with the requirements, and report to us in a timely fashion.”

A Liberal Democrat spokesperson said: "This was an honest oversight by local parties who largely rely on volunteers. We continue to offer training to local parties to ensure reporting deadlines are met."

A Labour party spokesperson said: “Through our rigorous review processes, we identified that there had been a delay in the reporting of a small number of local donations.

“We proactively reported these donations to the Electoral Commission on becoming aware of them to ensure that there are no gaps in transparency, and co-operated fully with the Commission to explain the late declarations."

Sources in Labour pointed out that their fiine was the second lowest ever awarded by the Electoral Commission.