Snipe - The Scoop

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Two Kensington Councillors resign over emails

Two Councillors in Kensington and Chelsea have resigned after they exchanged "sexually suggestive" emails about children.

Former Conservative Mayor of Kensington Cllr Barry Phelps distributed a series of black and white images of young boys with "lewd" captions written underneath.

Councillor Mark Daley was one of the recipients of these emails and failed to challenge Phelps about them.

In one email a boy is pictured standing in front of a priest with "prey" as the subject line.

Others portray young boys bent over and in sailor outfits with similarly suggestive captions underneath.

Leader of the Residents First campaign group Justin Downes reported the emails to the Council after being alerted to them by a resident.

In a statement Downes said that:

"These were innocent images and Councillor Phelps has created sexual overtones to them. I think it's absolutely right for them to go when the council proclaims itself as a council which is absolutely intolerant of child abuse."

When first confronted Phelps is alleged to have claimed that the emails were "witty" and accused the complainant of being a closet homosexual.

A spokesman for the Council said that the matter was subsequently referred to the Police.

In a statement today Council Leader Merrick Cockell said:

"Both have been dedicated and effective ward councillors. However, once it was established that unacceptable emails had been sent out on the Council’s system by one Councillor and had gone unchallenged by the other, both decided that they should resign."

There will now be a byelection held later this month

Two byelections will now be called.

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

The latest example of thought crime then is "ignoring a series of tawdry emails" ? O brave new world.

AdamB said...

Anonymous- As far as I'm aware Mark Daley chose to resign and has not been charged with any crime, thought or otherwise.

The complaint was against Phelps.

Anonymous said...

I hope that these two councillor's did not have any involvement with Schools or Children in any capacity whilst carrying out their duties ? it makes you wonder why they were so quick to resign.

AdamB said...

The timing may have had something to do with the impending Standards investigation.

Appealing of Ealing said...

"I hope that these two councillor's did not have any involvement with Schools or Children in any capacity whilst carrying out their duties ?"

Why? Did the Labour fascists make a law banning people with a poor sense of humour from having "involvement with Schools or Children"?

We had another council by-election in London recently -- in Lambeth. The piece of work whose resignation triggered that one had more than just a crap sense of humour. Not surprisingly, you didn't read about it here... yep, he's Labour.

AdamB said...

This has got nothing to do with humour unless you think innuendos about child abuse are funny.

The leadership of RBKC decided that Phelps had to go and rightly so. Not sure what "Labour fascists" have to do with it but each to their own.

Appealing of Ealing said...

"This has got nothing to do with humour unless you think innuendos about child abuse are funny."

Spare me the preachy tone -- many well-known comedians make jokes about this subject. And some might even regard Phelps's images as humorous -- particularly if you've got a crap sense of humour. Isn't that what Phelps claimed?

Now about your selective reporting of council resignations and by-elections....

AdamB said...

I've seen the emails and there's nothing funny about them. There's loads of them and it's clearly got little to do with humour. I'm not sure why you're trying to make out otherwise.

"Now about your selective reporting of council resignations and by-elections...."

This isn't the BBC. If you've got a story you think I'd be interested in then let me know about it. Otherwise just come and have a moan about it later - whatever suits.

Appealing of Ealing said...

No, this is not the BBC. The BBC are still reporting as if their Labour friends are still in power. Sad really.

If Toren Smith had been a Kensington Tory you'd have covered the story. No?

AdamB said...

I've never even heard of them but yes if someone had given me heads-up on the story as it was breaking then I would have covered it.

Christ it's dull having to answer your whatabout questions. Maybe I'll amuse myself by coming over to your blog and highlighting the thousands of stories you've never blogged about.

Appealing of Ealing said...

Bear with me. I think the hot weather has a lot to do with it.

Have since seen the emails: not humorous, not witty, very questionable.

Anonymous said...

A similar one with a priest did the rounds a while back. Our office found it quite funny. As has been said before, many on the comedy circuit do jokes like this and worse.

Anonymous said...

Appealing of Ealing

This subject appears to have struck a raw nerve with you for some reason ! If any Person,Social Worker, Teacher,Policeman,Judge,or Councillor sends E-mails of this nature regarding Children and at the same time has contact with other peoples Children in some capacity surely they are unfit to be trusted with Children?. Yes that Labour Councillor in Lambeth got what he deserved if he was guilty of downLoading inappropiate material of that nature. But what I dont understand is why you appear to be so worked up about this matter? Surely you should be happy that the Law protects Children from protential exploitation or exploitation ?

Chris N said...

AoE - exactly, what's the point of 'defending' one set of councillors (the Tory ones) by saying "well, Labour councillors do stupid things too". It's a logical fallacy that befits a CiF article on the Middle East, not London politics.

As for selective reporting - maybe look at the title of the blog. I didn't read on ConservativeHome how the only progressive aspects of the recent Budget were Labour hang overs. Funny that.

AdamB said...

Comment from Anonymous 8:32 appears to have been left by somebody from the Kensington council offices.

These emails get sent around there a lot then?

Adam Gray said...

Just for info Adam, the link to the by-election you provided on your story is to an entirely separate and unrelated by-election, following the resignation of Baroness Hanham who has become a Government Minister in the Lords.

The wards these two councillors represented are Earls Court and Cremorne.

AdamB said...

Ah yes wrong link. Corrected now.

Appealing of Ealing said...

Anonymous said...

"This subject appears to have struck a raw nerve with you for some reason !"

What subject -- hypocrisy?

Or what exactly are you blathering about?

"If any Person,Social Worker, Teacher,Policeman,Judge,or Councillor sends E-mails of this nature..."

The exact nature of it was what I was questioning. I don't think anyone who makes humour about child abuse is necessarily a bad person. As it turned out, the emails in this case were not so humorous, or at best, a very weird attempt at it.

"But what I dont understand..."

...is probably a lot of things.

"...is why you appear to be so worked up about this matter?"

I don't like double standards in reporting, especially when I haven't had a decent glass of port. As it turned out Adam asserted that he was unaware of the recent case in Lambeth, which is fair enough.

"Surely you should be happy that the Law protects Children from protential exploitation or exploitation ?"

You really are missing the point. Try something less taxing... like knitting -- thinking's not for you.

Appealing of Ealing said...

"AoE - exactly, what's the point of 'defending' one set of councillors (the Tory ones) by saying "well, Labour councillors do stupid things too"."

Chris, I'm not defending anyone, and certainly not on that basis. I was defending the right to make politically incorrect humour. It turned out in this case there was no humour to defend.

Anonymous said...

Appealing of Ealing

I dont see any hypocrisy in my views and if you think that I am blathering ,why is it that you have responded again and again on this subject? In your own words you say that :I dont think that anyone that makes humour about child abuse is necessarily a bad person.As it turned out,the e-mails in this case were not so humerous,or at the best,a very weird attempt at it. I have seen those e-mails along with many other people and I can assure you that people realise that those e-mails were of a Paedophillia nature.If you think otherwise you are in a minority! Just read the comments on the Chelsea and Westminister Chronicle Website, I think it is. You will then get an idea of what people in that local constituency think.The way things are going it wont be long before all councillors will need to be thoroughly checked out! My last thought is:would you have trusted these two councillor's anywhere near your children if you had any?Dont you think people should have concerns about what contact these two councillor's had with children whilst carrying out their duties?