Hamiltons' accuser jailed for three years

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The Independent Online

A mother of four who falsely accused former Tory MP Neil Hamilton and his wife Christine of rape was today jailed for three years.

Nadine Milroy-Sloan was described as a cunning fantasist after she spun a web of deceit in her hunt for fame and fortune.

Jailing her at London's Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court Judge Simon Smith said: "It's becoming too easy for people to sell fake allegations about well-known people to the Press, and the courts have to deal with it firmly."

Milroy-Sloan's Old Bailey trial heard that the unemployed 29-year-old, of Peterhouse Road, Grimsby, Lincs, told police she had been lured to an east London flat by Barry Lehaney, 62, after he allegedly posed on the Internet as the couple's chauffeur.

She claimed that once at the Ilford flat her sexual ordeal began.

In August 2001 the 54-year-old ex-Tory minister and his wife, 53, were arrested and held for five hours at Barkingside police station.

But the pair had never met the woman, and neither they nor Mr Lehaney were ever charged after receipts and other evidence showed the couple had been nowhere near Ilford at the time.

Milroy-Sloan faced a maximum sentence of seven years on each of two charges of intending to pervert the course of justice by alleging she had been raped by the Hamiltons and Mr Lehaney.

Judge Smith sentenced her to three years for each offence to run concurrently.

Judge Smith was the judge in the case of five men who had charges of plotting to kidnap pop star Victoria Beckham dropped after the prosecution's key witness was declared unreliable earlier this month.

In that case, the judge referred the matter to the Attorney General after hearing that the News of the World had paid £10,000 to a convicted criminal, Florim Gashi, for his story.