Bacup councillor corruption probe dropped by police

FEELS VINDICATED Coun Bob Bibby

FEELS VINDICATED Coun Bob Bibby

First published in North West

A COUNCILLOR from Bacup has spoken of his ‘vindication’ after corruption allegations against him were dropped.

Former Bury Council leader Coun Bob Bibby and four other men, including his partner Coun Jim Taylor, whose North Manor ward includes Summerseat and parts of Ramsbottom, were arrested in January by police investigating allegations of bribery involving a planning application.

Now police have said no further action is to be taken and there will be no prosecutions.

Claims believed centre on a supposed text message on a mobile phone led to Greater Manchester Police (GMP) seizing computers and paperwork from Bury Town Hall and Coun Bibby’s home in Booth Road, Stacksteads.

The Church ward councillor, first elected in 1999, described his arrest as having ‘no validity in the first place’ and plans to meet police chiefs to discuss the matter.

He said: “Anyone who knows anything about how planning framework works will understand that it is impossible for one person to determine the outcome. I wasn’t even on the relevant planning committee.

“This has ruined my political career.

“I am the only Conservative Bury council leader still alive and I didn’t want to retire with this hanging over me.”

Detective Superintendent Vincent Petrykowski of the GMP’s Economic Crime Unit said: “No further action will be taken against five men arrested following an investigation into alleged corruption.

“Throughout the investigation, there has been ongoing consultation between Greater Manchester Police and the Crown Prosecution Service.

“The CPS’s decision not to prosecute has been made following the most thorough review of all the evidence.”

Both men resigned the Tory whip to temporarily stand down from the party after the allegations emerged but remained as councillors.

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