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Last Updated: Saturday, 29 January, 2005, 18:08 GMT
UKIP candidate suspended in probe
Robert Kilroy-Silk
The party is still reeling from the departure of Robert Kilroy-Silk
Eurosceptic party UKIP have suspended a candidate for allegedly suggesting the criminally insane should be killed.

John Houston, 54, was due to stand in the East Kilbride seat in Lanarkshire at the next election.

But he was suspended after his reported views, including the return of the British Empire, were sent to two Scottish newspapers.

UKIP spokesman Mark Croucher said those who selected Mr Houston knew nothing of his views.

The episode comes at a difficult time for UKIP, soon after the high-profile departure of MEP Robert Kilroy-Silk.

Mr Houston is alleged to have said that the organs of the criminally insane should be "made available to law-abiding members of the community" and proposed the legalisation of drugs and the sex trade.

The document reportedly said: "We're looking for the resurrection of the British Empire.

"The problems for the human race - environmental and others - can only be dealt with on a global scale, and that calls for a radical alliance of the English-speaking nations, which they are uniquely able to do."

Mr Croucher said the main issue would be that Mr Houston's reported views had been presented as UKIP policy, which they were not.

He said they might have been submissions to a committee working on the party's manifesto, but would not have been matched to Mr Houston when he was standing to become a candidate.

He told BBC News: "He appears to have said these things. We have suspended him as a member and as a candidate.

"By all accounts none of this was mentioned at his selection meeting.

"It is simply a distraction from the task in hand, the EU constitution, not individual idiocies."

Mr Houston was quoted in the Herald newspaper saying: "I feel UKIP have over-reacted and overshot the runway."

Investigation

Peter Nielson, who is UKIP Scotland chairman, said he had suspended Mr Houston on Friday night.

"He will remain suspended while the matter is being investigated and then we will decide if and what further action will be taken."

He said that any evidence would be looked into and Mr Houston may be interviewed by the party.

He added: "I can't comment too much at the moment, I have one version from him but I haven't seen the papers yet."




SEE ALSO:
Kilroy-Silk quits 'shameful' UKIP
21 Jan 05 |  Politics
Kilroy quits UKIP group of MEPs
27 Oct 04 |  Politics
Major warns Tories against UKIP
24 Oct 04 |  Politics
UKIP branches 'reject Kilroy bid'
20 Oct 04 |  Politics
Profile: Robert Kilroy-Silk MEP
20 Jan 05 |  Politics


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