SUSSEX Police has launched investigations into both Liberal Democrat and Conservative general election expenses in Lewes.

The force has been granted an extension to investigate a complaint about Liberal Democrat Norman Baker’s expenses filed by Tory opponents earlier this month.

Officers have already begun an investigation into the expenses of the successful Conservative candidate Maria Caulfield.

Former Lewes MP Mr Baker said the allegations were “juvenile” and a “tit for tat” response by local Conservatives.

Lewes Conservatives received news this week that Sussex Police have been granted an extension of time to investigate irregularities relating to the former Liberal Democrat MP Norman Baker’s expenses.

The complaint was filed with just hours to go on the year deadline for fraud investigations.

Lewes Conservatives spokesman Douglas Murray and MP Maria Caulfield said they hoped for a “full and extensive” investigation to be carried out.

But Lib Dem members told this paper they were confident the complaint would be dismissed, pointing to similarities to allegations made against the former Lib Dem MP for Torbay Adrian Sanders.

Mr Sanders was cleared of any wrongdoing by Devon and Cornwall Police this month over expense claims for freepost leaflets.

Mr Baker, who lost his seat by 1,083 votes at last year’s general election, said: “This is juvenile, playground behaviour from the Conservatives which I consider a waste of police time.

“My advice to them would be to concentrate on the serious allegations concerning their own expenses and not try and divert attention.”

The Conservative party member who raised the complaint against Mr Baker told The Argus he was "incensed" when reading in the paper that the Liberal Democrats were taking Maria Caulfield to task over her election expenses.

He said: “I took it upon myself to check the election expenses of the former Liberal Democrat MP for Lewes, where I noticed that Norman Baker and his election agent had wrongly proportioned the expenditure for literature from the local spend to the national spend, which I understand to be against regulation.”