POLICE investigating alleged ‘financial irregularities’ relating to Lancashire County Council’s ‘One Connect’ joint venture with BT have raided offices on Merseyside.

Computer equipment is understood to have been taken from two premises belonging to Liverpool Direct – a similar operation involving the telecoms firms and Liverpool City Council.

The move comes after a property linked to David McElhinney, boss of both joint ventures, was visited by police last month.

Phil Halsall, LCC chief executive when payments of more than £600,000 were discovered to have been made to Dr McElhinney without the county treasurer’s knowledge, is also understood to have had his home visited in February.

The raids are all believed to be in connection with the probe into One Connect.

A Liverpool City Council spokesman declined to comment but Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson said the authority would assist the Lancashire force in its inquiries.

A Lancashire police spokesman said: “We will continue to speak to a number of people and follow a number of lines of inquiry in relation to this complex and ongoing investigation.”

A BT spokesman said: “This is entirely a matter for the police.”