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Swanley councillor booted from role as whip amid allegation of sexual harassment

PUBLISHED: 10:43 03 November 2016 | UPDATED: 10:43 03 November 2016

Cllr Tony Searles

Cllr Tony Searles

Archant

Tony Searles denies the allegation

A district and town councillor has denied an allegation of sexual harassment, which has seen him lose his role as council whip.

The allegation was made against Tony Searles by a member of council staff in May.

Following the claim, Tory councillors in Swanley met last month, and voted unanimously to remove Cllr Searles as whip.

Leader at Swanley Town Council, Victor Southern, said: “The Conservative Councillors Group of Swanley Town Council met on October 26 and voted unanimously to withdraw the whip from cllr Tony Searles.

“The decision was made mainly on the effect that certain allegations made against him had on the council as to cost and efficiency of administration.”

Cllr Searles was unavailable for comment, but told us he will not be resigning as councillor.

A representative from Whitehead-Monckton law firm said: “Our client denied, and denies, all allegations made against him which he views as without any basis whatsoever.

“Our client considers that he has been the victim of bullying in this whole affair.”

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