Further Lies Submitted To Prevent Release Of Information
1 Mr Webb received a letter from Robert Walsh, North East Lincolnshire Council's Director of Law and Democratic Services and Monitoring Officer, which was signed by Elizabeth Conolly, the Council's Head of Legal Services and Deputy Monitoring Officer. Within this letter, Robert Walsh stated that Mr Webb was "recognised standing outside" a public library "with a camera" and that Mr Webb "apparently used the camera to take photographs of various individuals from the Council and the Care Trust Plus…"
1.1 Robert Walsh also stated: "Staff did not consent to the taking of photographs. I consider your activity was designed to be threatening and intimidating towards those persons...
The Council have a duty to protect its staff. In the circumstances I seek your assurance that you will not take any further photographs of staff… I also seek an assurance that any photographs/images taken will not be used in any way and will be destroyed immediately.
Please return one copy of this letter signed by yourself that you agree to its contents. If you do not do so the Council will consider taking formal action to protect its staff."
1.2 Evidently, Robert Walsh was asserting statements of fact in this letter. However, Mr Webb was not standing outside a public building and did not use any camera to take any photographs/images of any employees from North East Lincolnshire Council or North East Lincolnshire Council Care Trust Plus. Therefore Robert Walsh's statements were baseless, unjustified and ultimately libellous.
1.3 Consequently, Robert Walsh's statements were nothing more than contemptible lies designed to denigrate and damage the reputation of Mr Webb. What is more unbelievable is that this public servant, that professes to be the Director of Law and Democratic Services, threatened formal action by the Council against Mr Webb if he refused to admit to these despicable smears. Naturally, Mr Webb was both outraged and upset by the demeanour of this Senior Council Officer. Before making any complaint to the Council in respect of Robert Walsh's deplorable conduct, Mr Webb requested personal information, under the Data Protection Act, from the Council in respect of the Director of Law and Democratic Services' lies.
2 Mr Webb received considerable and irrelevant paperwork from the Council in response to his subject access request. A letter also accompanied the response from the Director of Law and Democratic Services, which was again signed by Elizabeth Conolly. Within this letter, Robert Walsh relied upon regurgitated drivel regarding legal professional privilege, which simply refers to the hiding of his perverse dealings in such matters, and stated:
"however so far as Mrs Conolly is concerned the letter was based on a discussion with the individual concerned and Mrs Conolly took no notes of the meeting as the letter was written shortly after from memory."
2.1 Unmistakably and alarmingly, Robert Walsh was fully aware that Elizabeth Conolly participated in a discussion with a single individual, where she failed to take any notes of that particular discussion and then from her memory, composed and sent a threatening and intimidating letter to Mr Webb on behalf of Robert Walsh.
2.2 It is gross misconduct, immoral and an absolute abuse of power to threaten a citizen with formal action, when clearly both the Director of Law and Democratic Services and the Head of Legal Services knowingly did not possess any evidence to substantiate the content of the letter. Evidently, this harassment and victimisation by Robert Walsh and Elizabeth Conolly, who was nothing more to coerce Mr Webb into an admission for something he did not do, whilst they were in the knowledge that the threat of formal action by the Council with unlimited resources provided by the taxpayer of North East Lincolnshire is available to them if Mr Webb failed to sign to accept their false statements deliberately presented as being true.
2.3 Citizens expect professional solicitors, especially those who are employed by public authorities, to be honest and forthright when dealing with the very people who employ them. However, this undoubtedly proves that Robert Walsh and Elizabeth Conolly are liars who use the public purse to engage in deceit to persecute innocent members of the public.
3 After receiving the subject access response, Mr Webb submitted a complaint to the Council in respect of Robert Walsh's conduct. Mr Webb received a letter from Colin Bulger, the Council's Assistant Chief Executive. However, the Assistant Chief Executive's letter was not concerned with investigating the complaint against Robert Walsh, as required by the Council's Corporate Complaints Procedure, but was adversely focussed on unrelated issues and also raised extraneous matters concerning members of Mr Webb's family and his residence. Mr Webb informed Colin Bulger that his letter was preoccupied with investigating irrelevant matters that were causing him further alarm and distress and which were designed to prejudice the complaint against the Director of Law and Democratic Services in order to protect him.
3.1 The Assistant Chief Executive acknowledge Mr Webb's request and assured him that his complaint would be escalated to stage 3 of the Council's Corporate Complaints Procedure, which entailed an investigation by the Council's Chief Executive, Tony Hunter. Several months passed without any response from Tony Hunter. Mr Webb sent a further complaint to the Council and explained that he had still not received a response from the Chief Executive or an explanation as to the reason for any delay in responding. Mr Webb also stated:
"I believe I have allowed Mr Hunter ample time and sufficient opportunity to respond to these complaints, which surpass the requirements of the Council's Corporate Complaints Procedure. It has become quite clear that Mr Hunter has no intention of reviewing the complaints, undertaking any further investigation and explaining his formal decisions in writing. This is a clear breach of North East Lincolnshire Council's Corporate Complaints Procedure and Constitution, which is maladministration.
It is now my belief that Mr Hunter's silence is evidence of his wish to protect the Director of Law and Democratic Services, Mr Robert Walsh, who is now the Executive Director for Business Services by circumventing any further and proper investigation concerning the blatant lies, threats and intimidation against by Mr Walsh, which is documented. It is also my contention that my complaints against Mr Walsh were also unjustly subjected to suppression by the Chief Executive in view of the pending appointment of the Executive Director for Business Services.
I now request North East Lincolnshire Council implements the Model Disciplinary Procedure for Local Chief Executives forthwith and seek an assurance that an alternative arrangement is made in submitting this complaint to the Investigating and Disciplinary Committee and is not passed to the Monitoring Officer for reasons which are self evident."
3.2 Despite Mr Webb receiving a receipt from the Council in respect of this particular complaint against Tony Hunter, North East Lincolnshire Council failed to implement the Model Disciplinary Procedure for Local Chief Executives and simply ignored Mr Webb's complaint in its entirety.
4 In view of Tony Hunter's autocratic action to shield both the Director of Law and Democratic Services and the Head of Legal Services from the truthfulness of their corrupt actions though his prejudicial decision to fail to investigate those actions and the Council's complete failure to instigate the Model Disciplinary Procedure for Local Chief Executives, Mr Webb sent a letter to Councillor Andrew De Freitas, the Leader of the Council. Mr Webb informed Councillor Andrew De Freitas of the following:
"Further to my complaint to North East Lincolnshire Council regarding the conduct of Mr Tony Hunter, Chief Executive, I have not received any formal acknowledgment or response in respect of the matters raised within that particular complaint albeit an email message from the Council's Customer Requests team who stated that the complaint had been forwarded onto the relevant sections/persons for them to take appropriate action.
For your information, my complaint and the Council's Customer Requests response is attached below the email message sent to you in respect of this letter.
I believe 10 working days is a reasonable time for the Council to, at the least, formally acknowledge the content of my complaint and subsequently confirm any intention in dealing with those matters raised within it.
It is the overall responsibility of the Leader of North East Lincolnshire Council to coordinate and ensure the delivery, including monitoring and evaluation, of Council policies and make certain that the principles of equality and fairness are integral to all actions and policies of the Council.
As Leader of the Council, it is therefore my belief you have the responsibility to ensure that, pursuant to The Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) Regulations 2001 and North East Lincolnshire Council's Constitution, the Model Disciplinary Procedure for Local Chief Executives is monitored, implemented fairly and conducted as expeditiously as possible.
Consequently, I respectfully request the Leader of North East Lincolnshire Council to investigate the matters discussed above and to take any necessary and immediate action in respect of his findings."
4.1 However, Councillor Andrew De Freitas did not have the common or professional courtesy of acknowledging or acting upon the content of Mr Webb's letter. In light of this, Mr Webb sent a further letter to the Leader of the Council and explained:
"Further to my letter, unfortunately I have not received any acknowledgment or response from you in respect of the matters outlined in that letter and find this most disappointing.
If in the unfortunate event that I do not receive a response from you within 7 days of receipt of this letter, then I will deem it is not your wish, as Leader of North East Lincolnshire Council, to correspond with me at all in respect of the issues raised in my previous communication to you."
4.2 As expected from this disrespectful Member of the Council, Councillor Andrew De Freitas failed to acknowledge or respond to Mr Webb's letter. Clearly, this elected member of North East Lincolnshire Council is shielding and therefore protecting the Chief Executive from any investigation under the Model Disciplinary Procedure for Local Chief Executives and as of a consequence placed Mr Webb at a further disadvantage.
5 Consequently, Mr Webb also complained to the Council of Councillor Andrew De Freitas' unprofessional and discourteous conduct, stating that the Leader:
- "failed to implement policy and procedure of the Council, in consistency with the Council's Constitution, and therefore did not act in accordance with the trust that the complainant was entitled to place him;
- was not open and failed to give reasons for his actions and those of the authority in his failure to answer communications sent to him in relation to the matters complained of, contrary to the requirements of the Council's Constitution;
- failure to acknowledge and/or respond to communications sent to him, he has also improperly secured a disadvantage on the complainant and as of a consequence behaved in a manner contrary to the Council's Constitution where he should have avoided the appearance of such behaviour;
- as Leader of the Council, he failed to promote and support the principles set out in the Council's Constitution and therefore acted in a way that did not secure or preserve public confidence; and
- is, because of my personal beliefs, unjustly discriminating against me.
In view of my initial complaint against the Executive Director of Business Services, and the issues surrounding that particular complaint, I request that both the Council's Monitoring Officer and Deputy Monitoring Officer are excluded from any participation, for whatever reason, in this complaint against Councillor De Freitas.
Consequently, I request that an external Monitoring Officer is employed to provide advice and assistance etc., to the Council."
5.1 North East Lincolnshire Council's Protocol on the Role of the Monitoring Officer states:
Where the Monitoring Officer is in receipt of a complaint or is aware of a potential reportable event relating to a matter upon which he has previously advised the authority, he shall consult the Chief Executive who may then either refer the matter to the Deputy Monitoring Officer for investigation and report back to the Chief Executive or request a neighbouring authority to make their Monitoring Officer available to the authority to investigate the matter and report to the Chief Executive and/or the authority as appropriate."
5.2 Robert Walsh received Mr Webb's complaint against Councillor Andrew De Freitas where both he and Elizabeth Conolly had previously advised the authority in related matters. Through the protocol, the Council placed trust in the Monitoring Officer and expected him to have their best interests in mind and remain impartial. However, Robert Walsh did not consult the Chief Executive and request the services of a neighbouring authority to make their Monitoring Officer available to investigate the complaint but passed Mr Webb's complaint to Elizabeth Conolly, the Council's Deputy Monitoring Officer, who signed Robert Walsh's letter. In view of this, both the Monitoring Officer's and Deputy Monitoring Officer's obligations had clearly been compromised by self-interest. Crucially, Robert Walsh also failed to remove the Deputy Monitoring Officer from this situation and as of a consequence corrupted the Council's Protocol on the Role of the Monitoring Officer by unscrupulously allowing sycophant Elizabeth Conolly, who possessed the inability to be objective and steer the Council's Standards Committee Referrals Panel resulting in a whitewash of the complaint.
6 Mr Webb received a letter from Robert Walsh in respect of his complaint concerning Councillor Andrew De Freitas, where the Council's Standards Committee Referrals Panel concluded that Mr Webb's complaint against the Leader of the Council: "was essentially based on dissatisfaction with the outcome of complaints made about senior officers." For apparent reasons, it is impossible for a complainant to be dissatisfied with the outcome of complaints against Council employees if they are not aware of the recorded facts of the outcome. Subsequently, Mr Webb requested North East Lincolnshire Council to produce a copy of the "outcome" in respect of his complaints against both Robert Walsh and Tony Hunter and, plainly, it was unable to furnish Mr Webb with a copy of the "outcome" since it simply does not exist.
6.1 It is quite clear however that Tony Hunter blatantly abused his power by suppressing, contrary to the requirements of the Council's Corporate Complaints Procedure, the complaint against the Director of Law and Democratic Services, which is an unfair act stemming from prejudice and consequently misconduct. This was then compounded by the Council's silence, and therefore corruption, to investigate Mr Webb's consequential complaint against Tony Hunter under the Model Disciplinary Procedure for Local Chief Executives.
6.2 It is unambiguous that Elizabeth Conolly did not disclose any evidence at all to the Referrals Panel to substantiate her deceitful and fraudulent claims, which ultimately prejudiced Mr Webb's complaint in its entirety. Furthermore, this biased and baseless conclusion has no relevance whatsoever to the complaint made against Councillor Andrew De Freitas in respect of his conduct, particularly in the Leader's failure to respond to or indeed acknowledge correspondence containing legitimate concerns from a citizen and taxpayer of North East Lincolnshire.
7 Following a request for information on an unrelated issue, the Council refused to supply the requested information using an exemption in the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Mr Webb then appealed to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) in respect of the Council's decision. However, it became clear from documents provided by the ICO, following a subject access request under the Data Protection Act 1998 by Mr Webb, that the Council's Corporate Records and Information Manager, Paul Ellis, disclosed extraneous information to the ICO without Mr Webb's knowledge and consent. Paul Ellis stated:
"With regard to the 08/01/09 request for a specimen copy of the Chief Executive's contract of employment, which was provided to Mr Webb, this resulted in a complaint to the Leader of the Council seeking action against the Chief Executive. This was then followed by a complaint to the Council's Standards Committee against the Leader alleging a breach of the Councillor's code of conduct, effectively on the basis that the Leader should have instigated some action against the Chief Executive. In making his complaint to the Standards Committee, Mr Webb specifically requested that Mr Walsh and the Deputy Monitoring Officer should have no further involvement in the matter because of a complaint made by Mr Webb about Mr Walsh."
7.1 The Corporate Records and Information Manager did not unilaterally ascertain and disclose this information to the ICO as it also became quite apparent in other related correspondence to the ICO that Elizabeth Conolly was also involved. The truth is explicitly clear in sections 1 to 3.2 that the complaint against Robert Walsh is specifically associated with his lies against Mr Webb within his letter, which was signed by Elizabeth Conolly, where the Director of Law and Democratic Services categorically stated Mr Webb had threatened and intimidated employees of the Council and the Care Trust Plus by taking photographs/images of those individuals and not from matters arising from a request for specimen copy of the Chief Executive's contract of employment – another lie.
7.2 The facts are very clear in the above sections (5 to 5.2) that Robert Walsh and Elizabeth Conolly, as the Monitoring Officer and Deputy Monitoring Officer respectively, were not permitted, in accordance with the Council's Protocol on the Role of the Monitoring Officer, from participating in any matter whatsoever connected with the complaint against Councillor Andrew De Freitas since they both had previously advised the Council on matters relating to the complaint against the Leader and not for the reason that Mr Webb made a complaint against Robert Walsh – a further lie.
8 Within the same document to the ICO, Paul Ellis also stated:
"In relation to this matter an allegation of harassment of Human Resources officers was made against Mr Webb, and a letter was sent to him by the Council, in Mr Walsh's name, warning him about his alleged behaviour. This letter resulted in a complaint from Mr Webb, the investigation of which was conducted by the Council's Assistant Chief Executive."
8.1 An allegation is a statement affirming or denying certain matters of fact that an alleger is prepared to prove. It is plain to see from sections 1 to 2.3 above that the content of Robert Walsh's letter does not contain any allegation but is simply and purely fabrication designed to intimidate Mr Webb. As of result of these disgraceful lies and in the interests of fairness and natural justice, Mr Webb rightly and justly complained to the Council in respect of Robert Walsh's conduct. Consequently, Tony Hunter, as the Chief Executive of North East Lincolnshire Council, was afforded every opportunity as shown in sections 3 to 3.3 above to investigate Mr Webb's complaint against the Director of Law and Democratic Services but failed absolutely to conduct any investigation since the proof and truthfulness is just too overwhelming. This undeniably demonstrates that this particular statement is just merely another lie to conceal their barefaced abuse of power.
9 Even though one year had passed since Mr Webb submitted his complaint in respect of the Director of Law and Democratic Services' despicable lies and demands, Robert Walsh and Elizabeth Conolly collectively continue to surreptitiously disseminate derogative and libellous statements about Mr Webb to third parties, such as the ICO in this particular case, in the full knowledge that their statements are without foundation and who take advantage of those lies to portray Mr Webb, in the eyes of those reading those lies, as a criminal who threatens and intimidates employees of North East Lincolnshire Council.
9.1 Clearly, these liars became judges in their own case. Once these prevaricators were entrapped by their own lies then they simply relied upon superior sycophants who bastardise democratic processes to afford them with unconditional protection to the disservice of a vexed citizen who then had to suffer the distress and indignity of been labelled a criminal and was resolutely prevented access to any constitutional requirement of challenging lies before decisions are reached and the right of appeal against any decision taken.
9.2 The Council Taxpayer of the borough pay Tony Hunter a substantial sum of £150,000+ a year, which does not include allowances and perks, to improve quality in all areas, from environment and housing, schools and education to jobs and skills as well as ensuring an excellent standard of customer care for anyone who uses the Councils services or contacts the Council. However, Tony Hunter has also made it explicitly clear that it is also his duty to protect his Officers. It can be seen in the above statements that this defunct Chief Executive has no regard in meeting excellent standards of customer care but is dexterous in shielding dishonest Officers from the consequences of any proper internal and external investigations through policies and procedures set down by Members of the Council. Undoubtedly, this biased Chief Executive has an unequivocal conflict of interest and must be removed from his post, along with Robert Walsh and Elizabeth Conolly, before they cause further and grave harm to other innocent citizens, like Mr Webb, and the wider reputation of the Council.
10 If either the Leader of the Council, the Chief Executive, the Director of Law and Democratic Services who is now the Executive Director Business Services or the Head of Legal Services feel that Mr Webb's above account of abuse of power, misconduct and maladministration causing injustice is not accurate in anyway then he asks that this whole matter be investigated by an independent person external of the Council who can offer a transparent, fair and documented outcome, which neither of them ever afforded Mr Webb contrary to the roles, functions and responsibilities of Members and Senior Officers and with particular relevance to the rights of citizens, as set out in North East Lincolnshire Council's Constitution.
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