Mario Creatura, Tory candidate in the marginal seat of Croydon Central, faces scrutiny after he was found to be responsible for the publication of a homophobic cartoon that conflates paedophilia with homosexuality.
The independent revealed that Creatura was publications editor of the students union at Royal Holloway University when the union’s magazine, The Orbital, published a Harry Potter spoof cartoon in which it was suggested that Professor Dumbledore is a paedophile because he is gay.
The controversial cartoon was published shortly after “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” author J K Rowling, confirmed that the much-loved character Professor Dumbledore was intended to be gay.
The spoof was headlined “Harry Poofter and the gay Prof Dumbledore”. It was printed with the caption: “Professor Paedo: Do Harry, Ron and Hermione have more to worry about than just Voldemort?”.
When first published, the contentious cartoon sparked furious backlash from Royal Holloway University’s LGBT+ student group and resulted in the forced resignation of the magazine’s deputy editor.
Eastlondonlines spoke to Creatura:
“It was nothing to do with me. The editor and chief signed off the edition… It was a disgusting thing to have happened. At the time I made a public apology just for not been more involved in the process… I was 20 years old and it was a student publication and we are often up till 4 in the morning in-between doing a degree. It’s not an excuse, and I learnt from the mistake.”
He followed up with : “I have been a passionate supporter of LGBT rights and the group particularly in Croydon over many years. We sacked the person who was involved in it and the editor in chief who was ultimately responsible for it. We made a full and justified apology.”
This comes at the wrong time for Creatura with the general election imminent. Creatura is running a close race with Sarah Jones, Labour’s candidate, who has been MP for Croydon Central since her win in 2017.
Naz Shah, the Labour Party’s Shadow Women and Equalities minister condemned Creatura in a statement: “Mario Creatura publishing this appalling, extremely homophobic content provides further evidence of the deep prejudice that runs through the Conservative Party.
This is no surprise when its own leader Boris Johnson has compared gay marriage to marrying a dog, called gay men ‘tank topped bum boys’, opposed ‘gays in the military’ and opposed Labour’s plans to introduce LGBT+ education in schools. Mario Creatura is clearly not fit to be an MP.”
Creatura is councillor and Opposition Spokesman for Communities, Safety and Justice on Croydon Council – London’s largest borough – since 2014. Notably, he worked as a special advisor to Theresa May in No. 10.
Jones declined to comment.