While I was working in Daventry I had some minor involvement in what, even with hindsight, was quite possibly electoral fraud. There were a total of three vacancies for elected Branch Officers and although I was elected unopposed there were two candidates for each of the other two roles.
A number of features before, during
and after the election process combined to make me feel suspicious. There was
no evidence that either of the two, ultimately successful, candidates had been
correctly nominated. They were both expecting to be returned unopposed and were
very much caught by surprise when other nomination papers were handed in five
minutes before the deadline. I think it is more than likely that they then generated
their own papers retrospectively.
There also seemed to be a serious
mismatch between the number of ballot papers found in the ballot box and the
number of people who complained that they either never received their ballot
paper or who claimed that they didn’t even know that an election was taking
place. It seemed curious to everybody - except the successful candidates - that
such a high turnout was being claimed for an election where so many people were
complaining about not having voted! It was also impossible to reconcile the
votes for the different candidates with the way people claimed to have voted.
There was certainly widespread incredulity at the low number of votes the
unsuccessful candidates appeared to have received.
Subsequently it was discovered
that the ballot papers had been counted without the unsuccessful candidates
being present and without any public scrutiny. This was after the published time for the
count was unilaterally changed by the Returning Officer. Curiously the two successful candidates had
managed to be present at the count!
So no hard proof but a large number of unanswered questions shall we say!