A Conservative Party election agent has been found guilty of falsifying candidate nomination forms during the 2018 local government elections in London.

Diana Danescu, 28, of South Woodford, deliberately misled electors when collecting their signatures by claiming she was affiliated with the Labour Party and the Green Party, the Metropolitan Police said.

The force said Danescu had been employed by Conservative Campaign Headquarters (CCHQ) as a borough campaign manager.

But while "acting in a rogue capacity", she took on the role of an election agent for 29 Conservative Party candidates in the South Hackney constituency in the lead-up to local government elections in the capital in May 2018.

The Met added in a statement: "Danescu submitted a number of candidate nomination forms to the Returning Officer for Hackney which contained the names and signatures of electors who had not truly assented to the candidates being nominated to stand.

"In gathering the nominations, Danescu informed the local electors that she was affiliated to other organisations such as the Labour Party, Green Party and Hackney Council."

Police said that, following a trial at Southwark Crown Court, on September 11 Danescu was found guilty of 16 offences contrary to Section 65 (1)(b) of the Representation of the People Act (RPA) 1983, causing or permitting a false signature to be included on a nomination form.

Her conviction followed an investigation by the Metropolitan Police’s Special Enquiry Team and involved 32 prosecution witnesses during a trial that lasted five weeks.

Danescu was sentenced to six months’ imprisonment suspended for 18 months, alongside 200 hours’ community service, police said.

She was also ordered to pay a £2,000 contribution to court costs and a statutory court surcharge.

DC Jim Morrison, of the Metropolitan Police’s Special Enquiry Team, said: "Diana Danescu deliberately misled the electors of Hackney in the run-up to the local government elections in May 2018.

"In addition, she submitted names of electors who had not signed the nomination papers.

"The Metropolitan Police is committed to maintaining the integrity of the democratic process.

"I would like to thank people living and working in Hackney who came forward and provided evidence at the trial."