Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

MAYOR'S AIDE: POLICE MOVE IN; (1)Claim: Lee Jasper Admitted Improper Loan but Says He Knew Nothing about It (2)Revelations: The Saga of the City Hall Funding Scandal Which the Evening Standard Uncovered, Far Left, on 5december

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

MAYOR'S AIDE: POLICE MOVE IN; (1)Claim: Lee Jasper Admitted Improper Loan but Says He Knew Nothing about It (2)Revelations: The Saga of the City Hall Funding Scandal Which the Evening Standard Uncovered, Far Left, on 5december

Article excerpt

Byline: ANDREW GILLIGAN

LEE JASPER admitted today that [pounds sterling]18,000 of City Hall money was improperlydiverted to bail out a private company of which he is a director.

But Ken Livingstone's senior race adviser insisted he had known nothing of thepayment. A Scotland Yard inquiry has now begun to determine whether Mr Jasper'sdenial is true.

The inquiry, into a project known as Ethnic Mutual, is the fifth separatepolice investigation to be launched into a City Hall project in as many weeks,but is the most dangerous so far for Mr Jasper.

Officers last week raided the Deptford offices of Ethnic Mutual, which hasreceived more than [pounds sterling]1 million from the Mayor's London Development Agency andthe Government.

Police also executed a search warrant at the Brockley home of TitusBoye-Thompson, Ethnic Mutual's secretary. It is not known whether Mr Jasper hasbeen questioned.

Following enquiries by the Standard, Mr Jasper admitted today that the [pounds sterling]18,000of taxpayers' money was diverted from Ethnic Mutual to a private company,African Caribbean Positive Image Foundation, of which he is company secretary.

ACPIF was recently dissolved without filing accounts. In a statement, Mr Jaspersaid: "I was informed in October 2007 that a fellow former director. of ACPIF,Emerson Braithwaite, had without my knowledge arranged a loan of [pounds sterling]18,000 fromEthnic Mutual to be paid to ACPIF.

"The loan was not agreed by me, nor was I formally or informally consulted orcontacted about it as a director. of the company [ACPIF.] I only became aware aloan was received by ACPIF as a consequence of an investigation conducted bythe LDA and the Financial Services Authority As well as being a co-director. ofACPIF with Mr Jasper, and a close friend of his, Mr Braithwaite is a director.of Ethnic Mutual's parent body, the Ethnic Business Development Corporation. AScotland Yard spokesman said: "An investigation of fraud is continuing intoorganisations funded by public money.

Search warrants were executed on Monday 21 January at a business premises inDeptford and a residential address in Nursery Close, Brockley. …

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