Prosecutors given new file on MPs' expenses

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Indy Politics

Detectives passed a new file of evidence on the Parliamentary expenses scandal to prosecutors today.

Scotland Yard said the new file will be considered by specialist lawyers at the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

The dossier was the ninth to be passed to prosecutors, six have resulted in charges and no further action will be brought in two other cases.

A Met spokesman said a "small number" of cases remain under examination by a joint panel of police and prosecutors.

Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer and Metropolitan Police commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson set up a team to consider political expenses cases in May last year.

Members of the unit have considered nine files and charged six people - four MPs and two peers - and decided two people should face no further action.

Former Labour MPs David Chaytor, Elliot Morley and Jim Devine were charged with theft by false accounting earlier this year.

Chaytor faces jail after he pleaded guilty to stealing more than £20,000 at the Old Bailey last Friday.

The remaining two former Labour MPs face trials in the new year after they exhausted appeals against the case.

Former Tory Essex County Council leader Lord Hanningfield, also known as Paul White, faces six charges of making dishonest claims for allowances.

His trial was due to begin at Southwark Crown Court on Monday but has been postponed to a date to be fixed.

The fifth politician to face charges is Barnsley Central Labour MP Eric Illsley, who is accused of dishonestly claiming more than £20,000 for his London home.

The sixth is former Tory peer Lord Taylor - full name John David Beckett Taylor - who is to face six charges of false accounting.

In March, Labour peer Lady Uddin was told she will not face prosecution over expenses for a flat in Kent which was apparently unoccupied for long periods.

The second person to be told they will face no further action was Lord Clarke of Hampstead.

In May 2009, the Labour peer and former party chairman apparently admitted he claimed some expenses to make up for not being paid a salary.

The small number of cases still under investigation by police are believed to include former Labour MP Margaret Moran and Labour MP Denis MacShane.