A county councillor has been disqualified for 18 months after a tribunal decided he breached Ceredigion Council’s Code of Conduct on a number of occasions.

Moelfryn Maskell, who has represented Ciliau Aeron on the authority since 2008, appeared before a case tribunal set up by the Adjudication Panel of Wales last week.

The matter was referred by the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales after allegations were made that Cllr Maskell had attempted to misuse his position, had failed to declare an interest and to withdraw from consideration of various planning matters.

After the three-day hearing the three person panel was unanimous in its decision that the councillor failed to comply with the councils’ Codes of Conduct.

He resigned his seat immediately and it is expected there will be a by-election in the ward in due course.

The Tribunal found that Cllr Maskell took part in meetings to do with planning applications, the Unitary Development Plan, the Local Development Plan and road improvements in an area where he owned land.

The Case Tribunal found that by virtue of his ownership of land in the area, Cllr Maskell had a personal interest in a planning application for adjacent land, in the Unitary Development Plan, the Local Development Plan and road improvements to Heol Rhiwgoch. He did not declare such interest nor withdraw from the meetings.

It was also found that by virtue of a dispute with a third party Cllr Maskell had a personal interest in that person’s planning application. He again failed to declare such interest and to withdraw.

The Tribunal found that Cllr Maskell also breached the code by making oral representations to a highways department officer about road improvements at Heol Rhiwgoch, where he owned land. And that he sent an email to a planning officer in which he sought to influence matters to do with the development of land in relation to the Aberaeron Spatial Plan.

The Tribunal decided that the representations made to the officers were intended to influence matters to his advantage.

Cllr Maskell was disqualified for 18 months from being or becoming a member of Ceredigion County Council or of any other relevant authority within the meaning of the Local Government Act 2000, with immediate effect.

Earlier this year Cllr Lyndon Lloyd, Beulah, was suspended from one meeting of the development control committee after the Adjudication Panel decided he had been in breach of the Code of Conduct.

Cllr John Adams-Lewis, Cardigan, who is also accused of breaching the Code of Conduct, faces an Adjudication Panel tribunal hearing later this month.