Unite official who lost to Len McCluskey in leadership race ‘sacked’ : The Guardian

Gerard Coyne told he must leave the union after 28 years after investigation concluded he had misused data.

A senior Unite official who lost a close battle with Len McCluskey to lead Britain’s biggest union has been sacked.

Gerard Coyne, who was the union’s West Midlands regional organiser, was told that he must leave after 28 years for the misuse of data.

He lost out in the April election by fewer than 6,000 votes after challenging McCluskey’s leadership.

The union election was described as a battle for the heart and soul of the Labour party, which Unite bankrolls with £1.5m a year.

McCluskey, one of Jeremy Corbyn’s key allies and leader of the organisation that is Labour’s most generous donor, has called for the deselection of MPs who fail to back Labour’s leader. Coyne was backed by many MPs unhappy with Corbyn’s leadership.

The investigation into Coyne was led by Andrew Murray, Unite’s chief of staff who was seconded to the Corbyn campaign during the general election, it is understood.

Coyne was found guilty of using Labour party data and a call centre used by the party’s West Midlands mayoral candidate, Siôn Simon, to contact potential supporters.




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