Election 2015: Familiar face in hot water

Would-be Spalding developer Richard Garvie, who has been suspended by the Labour Party.
Would-be Spalding developer Richard Garvie, who has been suspended by the Labour Party.
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A would-be developer, who spoke of bringing a supermarket and cinema to Spalding, has been suspended from the Labour Party following conviction for fraud.

Parliamentary candidate Richard Garvie (30) was convicted on Thursday after using a closed bank account to pay for train tickets worth nearly £900.

I haven’t been dishonest in any way, I was just stupid.

Richard Garvie

Mr Garvie will stay on the ballot paper for Wellingborough and Rushden – and he’s urging people to vote for him while promising to resign if elected.

He said: “Unfortunately I can’t be replaced on the ballot paper. This means that for all those who have voted, I want to make sure their votes count for something. If you support Labour, vote for me on polling day and I will do the honourable thing if elected.”

The candidate was charged with fraud after he bought £890 of East Midlands Trains tickets between Kettering and London St Pancras with a card for an empty bank account.

Mr Garvie denied fraud at the hearing before Wellingborough magistrates and represented himself in court.

He told magistrates: “I used the account and intentionally ran up the debt with the bank so that, when the payments to the train company didn’t authorise, the bank would honour them and add it to my own debt.

“This is what happened with other transactions I made with through that account.

“My financial plan was poor and I was completely irresponsible by choosing to run up that debt, but I don’t accept that there is any evidence that I intentionally tried to keep money from the train company. I haven’t been dishonest in any way, I was just stupid.”

Mr Garvie is due to be sentenced later this year, although he has announced he will appeal against his conviction.

l In February 2012, Mr Garvie outlined his vision for setting up a regeneration company in Spalding.