A former Labour council election candidate fainted in the court where he was given a suspended prison sentence after lying to potential voters.
Gurcharan Bedi, aged 58, claimed he lived at a house he rented out on Hilton Road, in the Spring Vale ward of Wolverhampton. He also got the sitting tenant to lie to police.
Suspicions were raised when a council election officer noticed Bedi used the same false address on a nomination paper he submitted.
Bedi subsequently withdrew as Labour’s candidate in Spring Vale ahead of Wolverhampton City Council elections.
Bedi, of Henwood Road, Wolverhampton, had previously pleaded guilty to making a false statement on a nomination paper and also admitted supplying false information.
He fainted in the dock at Birmingham Crown Court where he was jailed for six months, suspended for 18 months, and ordered to pay £2,000 costs. He is also banned from running for council for five years.
Sentencing, Judge Simon Drew QC said: “As far as our electorial system is concerned, the integrity of that process is fundamental to our democracy, as you will know.”
Detective Sergeant Paddy Gillece, from West Midlands Police, said: “This was a cynical attempt by Bedi to manipulate the electoral system for his own benefit by falsely claiming that he lived on the Spring Vale ward.
"He believed the electorate in Spring Vale would be more likely to vote for him if he lived in the local area – so lied about his home address.
“He also thought that by registering as an elector in the area he’d be able to vote for himself and further increase his chances of winning the election.”