Conservative Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall Police, Alison Hernandez, is facing calls to stand aside after a mere three days in her post. Devon and Cornwall Police are currently undertaking investigations into the expenses filed in the aftermath of the 2015 General Election.
Tudor Evans, the Labour Leader of Plymouth City Council said,
“She’s under investigation, her Conservative colleagues are being investigated and she’s a politically controlled PCC.”
Adding that Hernandez should “absolutely” stand aside while these allegations are investigated.
Torbay MP Kevin Foster is currently under investigation for the expenses filed by his agent, Ms Hernandez. The Conservative Party say that their Battle Bus and hotel bills are accounted for properly in their national budget, but Police Forces are investigating as the bus itself and the hotels were used to accommodate activists campaigning in the Torbay constituency. Four Conservative-held constituencies across the Devon and Cornwall Police Force area are being investigated: Torbay, Plymouth Sutton and Devonport, North Cornwall, and Camborne and Redruth.
Former Liberal Democrat MP for Torbay Adrian Sanders has echoed calls for Hernandez to stand aside.
Foster and MP for Plymouth Sutton and Devonport Oliver Colvile said,
“The party’s national bus tour was authorised and paid for by Conservative campaign HQ [and] was intended to promote the party’s success in the general election and did not form part o[f] local election expenses.”
An external police force is being brought in to investigate the expenses to avoid a conflict of interest.