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Wolfe 'forgot' to declare conviction.

UKIP leadership hopeful Steven Woolfe has admitted failing to declare a drink-driving conviction when he stood for a police and crime commissioner post.

The MEP, who has been the frontrunner in the race to succeed Nigel Farage as party leader, said he "forgot about the conviction" when he stood in the Greater Manchester PCC election in 2012, in a possible breach of electoral law.

PCC candidates must declare convictions for which they could have received a prison sentence, and it is a criminal offence to make a false statement on nomination papers, the Electoral Commission website says.

He told Huffington Post he was fined PS350 and disqualified from driving for nine months after being caught drunk in charge of a scooter in 2002.

"I made a foolish mistake 14 years ago which I regret. As the years went on I forgot about the conviction as I got on with my life," he said.

"The conviction was a spent conviction in November 2012 and not in my mind when I stood for police and crime commissioner in Greater Manchester. It was also a spent conviction when I stood for the European elections in 2014 and general election in 2015."

It comes after Mr Woolfe blamed a technical blunder for missing Ukip's leadership nominations deadline.

Mr Woolfe insists he is still in the race despite overshooting the deadline of noon on Sunday by 17 minutes, and has left the door open for a legal challenge if party officials block him from standing.

The party made it clear there would be no final decision until the completion of vetting procedures today.

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Ukip leadership hopeful Steven Woolfe

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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Aug 2, 2016
Words:275
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