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The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) national steering committee has launched an appeal to help meet the legal costs of Chris Fernandez, the local election agent for eight TUSC candidates at the 2016 council elections in Derby, who earlier this year was imprisoned for 'electoral fraud'.
A full account of what was a politically motivated prosecution is available on the TUSC website.
In essence, Chris was judged guilty of misleading members of the public on the electoral register into signing candidates' nomination papers in the 2016 local elections.
Chris categorically denied setting out to mislead anyone but, before the trial, was put under enormous pressure to admit to something he hadn't done and not contest the case. He was asked, in effect, to commit perjury and lie in court!
But now, scandalously, after serving four months in prison, he has been hit with a bill for £8,847 for exercising his right to protest his innocence.
Chris had applied for legal aid but, because he lost the case, he has to pay a contribution to the costs.
Working class activists should not be left to face these pressures alone, which is why the TUSC steering committee has agreed to launch a Chris Fernandez Legal Costs Fund Appeal.
Donations, which will go to Chris from the TUSC national account, can be made through PayPal on the TUSC website at tusc.org.uk/donate.
Please use the 'Add special instructions' button to say that the donation is for the Legal Costs Fund Appeal.
Alternatively, cheques payable to TUSC can be sent to TUSC, 17 Colebert House, Colebert Avenue, London E1 4JP, again with a note saying it is for the Legal Costs Fund Appeal.
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