A #Ukip #General Election candidate has come fighting back against critics after a photo of him topless went viral.

George Connolly, who was selected to fight the Wyre Forest seat on behalf of UKIP, has vowed to continue despite spiralling criticism over a topless photo taken years ago.

The photo was leaked to the Wyre Forest Liberal Democrats by a former friend of Mr. Connolly's, who then shared it on social media to try and damage their opponent.

It was then shared by Paul Waugh, the Editor of the Huffington Post, and has been distributed among different social media outlets since.

'A complete non-story'

However, according to Birmingham Mail, the UKIP candidate has since shut down his different social media profiles, meaning no one has been able to verify whether the photo came from his original LinkedIn profile.

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In an exclusive interview with Blasting News, Mr. Connolly said that what the Wyre Forest Liberal Democrats have done to him is a 'complete non-story and they will not beat me by doing this.'

In response to the Birmingham Mail's report, which suggested the Brexiteer might have used the picture on his LinkedIn profile, he said the topless photo was never on there in the first place.

He added: 'It was leaked to the Wyre Forest Liberal Democrats by an outside source, someone that I used to be close to.

'What I want to know is why the media haven't reported on the fraudulent activities of many local Liberal Democrats or a local Green councillor who had pornographic material on his computer at home.'

'Hypocrisy'

He accused the Lib Dems of hypocrisy due to their failure to deal with their candidates embroiled in fraudulent activities.

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He said: 'People are scared of me and they are worried about me. This is all very petty.'

Mr. Connolly was selected last week to fight the Wyre Forest constituency in June's general election, which covers the Worcestershire towns of Kidderminster, Bewdley and Stourport, as well as the surrounding villages.

The current MP is Conservative Mark Garnier, who backed the Stronger In campaign to remain in the European Union during last year's referendum.

Despite this story, the UKIP candidate maintains that there is a lot of support for him on the doorsteps where 64% of people voted to leave the EU, regardless of Mr. Garnier's views last year.

He said this is because it is a general election dominated by #Brexit.

But the Brexiteer said he still has the full support of his local UKIP branch behind him.

He added: 'They voted for me unanimously to remain as their Prospective Parliamentary Candidate. This whole story is nothing but a storm in a teacup.

'There is only so much hype about it because of the party I am from.'

Mr. Connolly has received some criticism online.

Simple Bets tweeted: 'Fair play he can't f*** it up any worse than the rest.'

Wyre Forest Liberal Democrats were asked for a response, but they declined to comment.