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Council leader resigns following arrest

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The leader of Eden District Council has resigned following his arrest as part of a fraud investigation.

Colin Nineham (Independent) quit his post at a special meeting of the Cumbrian council on Wednesday, before resigning as a councillor.

He had been leader since June 2008, having been elected to the council in 1999.

Cllr Nineham’s arrest was part of an ongoing investigation into alleged fraud relating to Eden Community Recycling, where he holds the post of managing director.

He has not been charged and is on bail until November.

Deputy council leader, Cllr Keith Phillips said: “Cllr Nineham offered his resignation to the executive as he wishes to concentrate on addressing the allegations against him and clearing his name.

“He did not wish the issues he is facing to reflect on the council’s reputation and his resignation will now go before a full council meeting at the earliest opportunity.”

Eden District Council must now appoint a new leader, who will nominate his or her executive and a by-election will take place in Cllr Nineham’s Penrith West ward in due course.

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