THE Crown Court conviction of a Cheshire East councillor has been a ‘real blow to the integrity’ of elected representatives on the authority, according to Labour politicians.

Questions remain over clr Brian Silvester’s position, after he was suspended from the council following a £45,000 fine for fire safety offences relating to a property he rented out in Shavington.

Cheshire East Council is prevented from excluding the former mayor of Crewe and Nantwich because his sentence did not exceed three months imprisonment.

Leader of the Labour Group, David Newton, said the matter had damaged reputations.

He said: "The recent conviction of clr Brian Silvester for allowing his premises to be rented out in a highly dangerous state is a real blow to the integrity of councillors.

“The conviction of any councillor for breaking the law damages the reputation of politicians.

“Individual wrongdoing should not be a matter of party politics, and the fact that the prosecution was brought by Cheshire East Council demonstrates a recognition that its own members are not above the law.”

Clr Silvester, the Conservative ward member for Willaston and Rope, appeared at Chester Crown Court on October 23, having pleaded guilty to 11 fire safety offences and failing to obtain the necessary license for a house in multiple occupancy.

The charges related to rooms rented out as bedsits at Shavington House Farm on Crewe Road.

Clr Newton stopped short of calling for Clr Silvester to resign, or be excluded from the council.

He said: “When the initial prosecution was announced, the Conservative Group moved swiftly to suspend the whip, and the Labour Group believes that it is for the Conservative Group to decide whether or not to confirm that exclusion.”