Watchdog called in over Tory donors

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Indy Politics

The Electoral Commission is to be asked to investigate the Conservatives' network of financial supporters. The Labour MP Kevan Jones, who has been investigating Tory finances, said he would be writing to the elections watchdog to request more information after it emerged that the son of a controversial Guernsey-based donor has handed the party more than 500,000.

Labour MPs are demanding clarification of the hefty donations from Tom Scott, who gave 500,000 in April last year and has also given the party two smaller donations of 5,000.

Details of Mr Scott's generosity sparked questions from Tory opponents, amid intense scrutiny of party funding after recent revelations that a Labour backer, David Abrahams, gave the party over 600,000 via three "proxy" donors.

Mr Scott's father was plunged into controversy last year when it emerged he had used a loophole to give over 100,000 to the party, despite living in the Channel Islands. He also gave 10,000 to David Cameron's leadership campaign in 2005. Although he was disqualified from donating directly, as a Channel Islands resident, Mr Scott senior, also called Tom, was able to support the party via a car dealership which he owned in Bournemouth.

Critics claimed the tycoon was using a loophole to support the party despite being "foreign-based".

Mr Jones said: "We have no reason to suggest there is anything questionable about these donations, but it is extremely important we have absolute clarity about how they were made."

Tory officials last night insisted everything was above board.