Joe Anderson bailed after bribery and witness intimidation probe

Joe Anderson and Elliot Lawless

Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson has been released on police bail after being arrested yesterday on suspicion of conspiracy to commit bribery and witness intimidation.

The four men arrested with Anderson have also been released on police bail.

Police now have 28 days to decide whether to charge anyone arrested, including a 46-year-old man from Ainsdale, however, bail can be renewed as needed for up to 3 months, and senior officers or magistrates can extend this period even further.

None of the identities of the men arrested have been confirmed by police, however Mayor Anderson’s name has been widely circulated.

Anderson has since been suspended by the Labour party while investigations continue.

Police have conducted a year-long investigation surrounding property developer Elliot Lawless, who was arrested earlier this year.

In March three Elliot Group schemes were placed in administration after allegations of fraud and corruption were made against Lawless, the company’s founder.

In December 2019, Lawless was arrested at the same time as Liverpool council officer Nick Kavanagh, and was questioned on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud, bribery and corruption.

Kavanagh, who was since been suspended from his role as Liverpool Council’s Director of Housing and Regeneration, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to defraud and misconduct in a public office.

Lawless denies any wrongdoing.

Liverpool City Council says they are cooperating with Merseyside Police and will offer no further comment.