Mick Bates to face assault charge

WalesOnline reports:

LIBERAL Democrat AM Mick Bates has been suspended by the party after it was confirmed he will face prosecution for assault following a late night incident in Cardiff city centre.

Joanne Foster, chief executive of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, issued a statement which said: “This afternoon, Mick Bates was told by South Wales Police that he will be summonsed at a future date for various offences following an incident in Cardiff on January 20. The Welsh Liberal Democrats regard this matter with the utmost seriousness. Therefore, Mr Bates’ membership of the Welsh Liberal Democrats has been suspended, pending the outcome of the case.”

A note that accompanied the press release said: “No interviews will be given by Mr and Mrs Bates, or members of his legal team. The Welsh Liberal Democrats will not be commenting further.”

Mr Bates, who represents Montgomeryshire, had already announced he will not be standing for re-election in next year’s National Assembly election.

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7 Comments

  • Whatever happened to ‘innocent until proven guilty’

  • Andrew Suffield 18th Apr '10 - 1:22pm

    “suspended pending the outcome” is a reasonable precaution. “summarily thrown out of the party” would be an unreasonable presumption of guilt (sadly, this has happened once or twice).

  • Tony Greaves 18th Apr '10 - 2:25pm

    I think suspended from the Assembly group is reasonable (it should be done my consent). Suspension from the party is in my view illiberal and ridiculous and a symptom of how the media is now allowed to rule in cases such as this.

    The question is – if he were found guilty would that warrant expulsion from the party? Obviously not.

    Tony Greaves

  • Andrew Suffield 18th Apr '10 - 3:46pm

    Suspension in these cases is a practical case of “justice must not merely be done, it must be seen to be done”. It would be possible to prove to an interested party that there was nothing improper happening if people were not suspended, but doing things this way proves it to all the disinterested parties who can’t be bothered to find out but will have a loud opinion on the subject anyway.

  • I agree with Tony G

  • welshwindbag 19th Apr '10 - 5:02pm

    There is a strong case to answer and of course he should be suspended until the findings are completed by the court. If he is charged with assault, he really should do the right thing and resign.

    The fact is, his behaviour on the night in question was disgraceful. To be thrown out of a restaurant because of drunken behaviour is appalling for a man in his position.

    What is it with politicians these days? As soon as they get a bit of power they think they can behave in any way they want and they are above the law. No wonder the general public has lost all faith in them.

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