Coventry & Warwickshire

Rugby councillor denies 'offensive' corner shop tweet to Sadiq Khan

Sidiq Khan
Image caption Sidiq Khan is Labour's London mayor candidate

A councillor has denied posting a "grossly offensive" tweet about Labour MP Sadiq Khan, in which he likened his constituency office to a corner shop.

Magistrates heard that Jim Buckley tweeted: "Your next London Mayor? You think his corner shop would be open on a Saturday?", last November.

The 60-year-old was expelled by his local Conservative group and is now an independent councillor in Rugby.

He will stand trial at Leamington Spa Magistrates' Court on 11 March.

The court heard Mr Buckley, who lives in Hillmorton, the ward he represents on Rugby Borough Council, accepted sending the tweet, which he later deleted.

But his solicitor, Mohammad Farooq, said: "However he would argue that there is a fine line between sending something which is insensitive and something which is grossly offensive."

Mr Buckley has been charged under the 2003 Communications Act in that the tweet was "grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character",

Mr Khan, was born in 1970 in London to a family of Pakistani immigrants and worked as a lawyer before becoming a politician in 2005.

He is the MP for Tooting and Labour's candidate for mayor of London.

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