A LABOUR councillor could face a police probe after circulating racist literature to her local residents.
Belhus councillor Sue Gray sent an e-mail to residents called ‘Police Instructions-Bedfordshire Police-This is unbelievable” which purports to be a protocol guide for dealing with terrorism suspects who may be Muslims.
The e-mail finishes with the message:
“It’s now predicted that Britain will become an Islamic state by 2070. (Time to think about your children/grandchildren.)
“Please forward this e-mail asap so that 40% of British voters who didn’t vote last time might get the message.”
One of the recipients, Chris Savill then forwarded the e-mail to a number of people including Acting Inspector Marc Jordan, who is based at South Ockendon police station.
A/Insp Jordan wrote back to Mr Savill. He said:
“Mr Savill…I consider this to be very close to inciting racail (sic) hatred and as such may constitute an offence. I will be looking into this further with my local hate crime officers. If deemed inappropriate I will take action”.
Essex Police have now confirmed that an investigation is underway. A spokesperson said: “Acting Inspector Jordan has notified the Hate Crime Liaison Officer who is looking at the e-mail in order to assess whether an offence has been committed.
Cllr Gray has told YourThurrock that she is mortified at what has happened.
She said: I have an awful lot of emails to my private email address and most of the time I send them on to various members of South Ockendon Residents Association.
“I am a very open person and unfortunately on the one occasion I had not read the contents of the email, a very big mistake on my part.
I am so sorry for any pain I have inflicted on any person and hope that everyone will agree it was a mistake. Those who know me will know it was not my intention to upset any person.
Mr Savill however was in unrepentant mood.
He said: I thought this would incite a discussion to the point on what is really true or untrue, given the climate we now live in!
“Some might deem that my email being forwarded may have hit a sore point with some persons in the police force! All I will say is, prove it wrong!
‘I’ve got nothing to be afraid of as I am not a racist and have never incited racism or race hate!
‘Those who really know me and what I am about, know the truth of my nature!
A statement on the Bedfordshire Police website confirmed that the original message was a hoax.
They said: “We are aware there is information circulating on the internet which falsely purports to be our guidelines on entering Muslim homes. This information is maliciously incorrect and should be ignored”.