Essex: Parish councillor sends four-letter expletive to standards investigator

Library image.

Library image. - Credit: PA

A parish councillor facing a standards probe emailed a four-letter expletive to the man investigating the allegations.

A parish councillor emailed a “highly offensive” four-letter expletive to the man investigating allegations he breached a code of conduct.

Simon Carlsson-Browne, a member of Alresford Parish Council, was investigated after claims he had failed to declare an interest and acted inappropriately during discussions over future housing plans for the village.

Tim Earl, deputy monitoring officer at Suffolk County Council, acted as an independent investigator for the Tendring District Council (TDC) probe.

He found that Mr Carlsson-Browne had not suppressed discussion of a particular potential housing site in TDC’s local plan, but did find he had not properly declared an interest in that he lived very close to the site. The claims related to actions dating back to 2011, and the complaint was made in December last year.

Once Mr Earl had written his draft report he sent it as standard procedure to Mr Carlsson-Browne and the original complainant.

However, in response Mr Earl received an email from the parish councillor containing an offensive four-letter expletive.

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In the reply Mr Carlsson-Browne said: “Lying ****.”

Mr Earl commented that the remark seemed to be aimed at somebody else, but added: “I found it highly offensive and not something I would expect from a councillor. It is completely inappropriate in any event.”

The exchange has been detailed in Mr Earl’s report to TDC’s town and parish council standards sub-committee, which is set to meet on Monday morning to decide if it agrees with his findings and if so whether sanctions should be placed on Mr Carlsson-Browne.

Punitive measures could include recommending the parish council bars him from the offices except to attend meetings, withdraw facilities such as computers, or replace him as their representative on outside bodies. It cannot suspend or disqualify the member, or recommend such action to a parish council.

Mr Osborne said it was not appropriate to comment ahead of Monday’s meeting.

The EADT could not contact Mr Carlsson-Browne for comment yesterday.