Labour councillor Tonia Ashikodi has been charged with fraud and perverting the course of justice after an investigation into her council tenancy and the ownership of “a number of properties”.
The Glyndon ward representative, who has been a councillor for two years, is due to appear at Bromley Magistrates Court on Monday 6 August.
A statement released by council chief executive Debbie Warren and head of legal services John Scarborough said: “Following the conclusion of a detailed criminal investigation carried out by the Council’s Internal Audit & Anti Fraud Team regarding Tonia Ashikodi’s council tenancy and the ownership of a number of properties, the Council has decided that there is sufficient evidence and it is in the public interest to charge Tonia Ashikodi with the following criminal offences:
“- Two offences of fraud by false representation, contrary to sections 1 and 2 of the Fraud Act 2006.
” – Jointly with another, an offence of perverting the course of justice, contrary to common law.
“Information relating to these offences have been laid at Bromley Magistrates’ Court today and these will be served upon Ms Ashikodi in due course. Ms Ashikodi will be summoned to appear before the magistrates’ court on 6th August 2018 and the prosecution will be in the hands of the court.”
The statement went on: “Given Ms Ashikodi’s position as a Royal Borough of Greenwich elected councillor, there has been media speculation and public/press enquiries received by the council. This statement is being made now in the interests of transparency/clarity and in order to avoid further speculation which is harmful to both the Royal Borough [sic] and the reputation of local government generally.”
Last month, 853 reported that Land Registry records showed Cllr Ashikodi was named as the legal owner of a house in Thamesmead while declaring a council property in Plumstead as her home when she stood for election in May. The property was transferred to her father shortly after the election.
The 29-year-old entered the council in a by-election in 2016, retaining the Glyndon seat in this May’s poll. She has also sat on the youth council in neighbouring Bexley.
After this year’s election, Ashikodi was given a place on the board of council services company GS Plus by leader Danny Thorpe, which entitles her to an extra £4,000 a year on top of her council allowance.
853 understands Labour councillors have been summoned to an emergency meeting on Wednesday.
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