Constituent's harassment of MP was 'criminal'

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A constituent's attempt to contact his MP went "far beyond the acceptable and became criminal", a court heard yesterday.

John Bradley, 48, bombarded the Liverpool office of Labour's Louise Ellman with phone calls and emails after he wrongly believed her staff were preventing him from seeing her.

It culminated in a "particularly hostile" voicemail he left at the constituency office, Liverpool magistrates' court was told.

Neale Evans, for the prosecution, said: "Some of the contact may initially have been over a legitimate dispute but it turned into open hostility."

Bradley, of Edge Hill, admitted harassment at an earlier hearing.

Ken Heckle, for the defence, said: "He is an intelligent, articulate man who may be perceived as an over-zealous person at times. He accepts this particular contact went into harassment." The judge gave Bradley a conditional discharge of two years. A restraining order preventing him from directly contacting Mrs Ellman was also issued.