St Albans UKIP candidate comes clean after allegations of male escort sting
PUBLISHED: 14:53 01 May 2013 | UPDATED: 15:51 01 May 2013
UKIP has suffered another embarrassment this week after it has come to light that a candidate standing in tomorrow’s county council elections allegedly worked as a male escort while he was a member of the police force.
Christopher Thorpe, who is the party’s candidate for The Colneys, had to resign as a Herts Police officer in 2001 when he was found guilty of discreditable conduct following a disciplinary hearing.
This came after undercover investigators working for a national newspaper hired him to attend a hen party and reported that he turned up in his police uniform, stripped to his boxer shorts and offered to have sex with all seven women in attendance.
Mr Thorpe, a stay-at-home dad from Colney Heath, denied he worked as a male escort and told the Herts Advertiser he fell into a “trap” organised by the tabloid and this was an isolated episode.
He said: “I regret that they phoned me and that they organised it and that I went. It is not something I ever plan on repeating.
“You go along thinking it will be a laugh and it ends up being an overblown situation.”
When asked if this should prevent him from standing for public office he went on: “I think we have had enough of manufactured politicians.
“I think people should come from all different backgrounds. We only have to look in the Conservative Party; there are one or two criminals.”
Herts Police has confirmed that during the misconduct investigation Mr Thorpe, who was aged 35 at the time, pleaded guilty to the offences and subsequently lost an appeal against the decision which required him to resign.
St Albans Lib Dem Cllr Chris Brazier, who is also standing for the seat in The Colneys, has called for UKIP to properly vet its candidates before fielding them for election.
He said: “There must be a vetting in UKIP for politicians. I am vetted in the Liberal Democrats and they say ‘Is there anything that would embarrass the party?’.
“I was shocked when I heard he [Mr Thorpe] was standing. Other people have contacted me and said ‘Why is he standing?’.”
However, Mr Thorpe explained: “That is all totally behind me, it was more than a decade ago. I was a Pc for my local village in Colney Heath so people remember these things and when you want to do something else with your life they think it is a good idea to run you down.”
Across the country during the past week UKIP has suspended one of their local election hopefuls after a photo emerged on his Facebook of him apparently delivering a Nazi salute.
The party also withdrew its support of another candidate in Cornwall when it emerged she was once a BNP member.
When the Herts Advertiser contacted UKIP’s St Albans chairman he declined to comment.
The three other candidates contesting the seat are Dreda Gordon (Labour), Lydia El-Khouri (Green) and Dave Winstone (Conservative).