Former DUP mayor stripped of honour following sexual offence conviction

Former DUP mayor stripped of honour following sexual offence conviction

A FORMER DUP mayor has been stripped of his MBE after being convicted of a sexual offence.

Thomas Hogg was awarded an MBE in Queen Elizabeth II's 2016 Birthday Honours for Services to Local Government in Antrim.

However, the 34-year-old was included on a list of revoked honours published by the Cabinet Office on Tuesday.

The move comes following Hogg's 2021 conviction for inciting a boy under 16 to engage in sexual activity.

The court heard how, in 2019, Hogg had offered to perform a sex act on the 15-year-old boy as well as asking the boy to do the same in return.

He was sentenced to three months in prison, suspended for two years, and was ordered to pay £1,000 in compensation to his victim.

Hogg, who served as Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council from 2014-15, resigned from both the council and the DUP in October 2019 after the allegations emerged.

He was first elected as a councillor for the party in 2011.

Honour can be withdrawn, or 'forfeited', if recipients bring the honours system into disrepute.

This includes receiving a custodial sentence of more than three months, being convicted of a sexual offence or being struck off by a regulatory authority or professional body.

Eleven other people had their honours forfeited on Tuesday, nine for criminal convictions and two for professional disbarment, including former football coach Dario Gradi.

A 2021 independent report for the Football Association found Gradi had failed to do more to investigate rumours of child abuse committed by coach Barry Bennell while at Crewe Alexandra.