MP Eric Illsley faces charges over expenses

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Another MP will face court over expenses claims, the Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer said today.

Labour's Eric Illsley is accused of three counts of false accounting and will appear at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court on June 17.

It is alleged that he falsely claimed more than £20,000 over three years for expenses on his second home in London.

Mr Starmer said: "Having thoroughly reviewed a file of evidence we received from the Metropolitan Police on March 13 this year, we concluded that there is sufficient evidence and it is in the public interest to bring criminal charges against Eric Illsley MP.

"Mr Illsley faces three charges under section 17 of the Theft Act 1968 for false accounting."

It is alleged that Mr Illsley dishonestly claimed expenses for council tax, maintenance, insurance and utilities at his second home in Renfrew Road, Kennington, south London, between May 2005 and April 2008.

Three former Labour MPs and a suspended Tory peer have already been charged over their expense claims.

Lord Hanningfield is accused of making false claims for travel allowances.

David Chaytor, 60, of Todmorden, Lancashire, is accused of falsely claiming rent on a London flat he owned, falsely filing invoices for IT work and renting a property from his mother, against regulations.

Elliot Morley, 57, of Winterton, North Lincolnshire, allegedly falsely claimed £30,428 in interest payments between 2004 and 2007 towards a mortgage on his home which he had already paid off.

Jim Devine, 56, of Bathgate, West Lothian, is said to have wrongly submitted two invoices worth a total of £5,505 for services provided by Armstrong Printing Limited.

He also faced a second charge alleging that he dishonestly claimed cleaning and maintenance costs of £3,240 by submitting false invoices from Tom O'Donnell Hygiene and Cleaning Services.

A row erupted last month when the three ex-MPs were granted legal aid to defend themselves. At the time David Cameron branded the decision "an outrage".

Mr Illsley has been suspended from the Labour Party.

A party spokesman said: "The Labour Party's general secretary has issued Eric Illsley with a suspension following the CPS's announcement of criminal charges against him.

"As a result, Eric Illsley has been suspended from the Whip and cannot attend any Labour Party meeting. This was felt necessary in light of the criminal charges."