Simon Danczuk: Scotland Yard looking into MP's expenses claims following Ipsa probe

MP is currently suspended from the Labour party over separate allegations of impropriety

Caroline Mortimer
Saturday 05 March 2016 02:21 GMT
Simon Danczuk (centre) is currently facing an Ipsa probe into his expense claims
Simon Danczuk (centre) is currently facing an Ipsa probe into his expense claims (PA)

Scotland Yard has confirmed it is investigating Simon Danczuk over his expense claims.

A spokesman from the Metropolitan police confirmed to the Independent they are “assessing” allegations that the Rochdale MP received thousands of pounds in expenses for his children to stay at his London flat.

He said: “The special enquiry team is assessing an allegation of fraud reported by two separate members of the public.

“The first was received by the Met on 2nd February and the second came in via another police force later in February”.

He declined to release any further details and Mr Danczuk has not been arrested.

The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) - which regulates expenses - allows MPs to claim up to £2,425 extra a year towards accommodation costs for each of their dependents.

But Mr Danczuk’s eldest son said he has only visited his father in London once since he became an MP in 2010.

Last month, Ipsa compliance officer Peter Davis announced they had launched a formal probe in Mr Danczuk’s claims following a complaint by a member of the public.

The father-of-four said at the time that his original claim “was made properly and based on my honest interpretation of the regulations”.

He said the rules were “poorly worded” and “not fit for purpose when it comes to modern families like mine”.

The letter to Mr Hennigan from London Metropolitan Police
The letter to Mr Hennigan from London Metropolitan Police

The operation head of the Special Enquiry Team at Scotland Yard, Detective Inspector Howard Holt, wrote a letter to Rochdale Liberal Democrat activist David Hennigan saying: “Following on from your letter, dated January 26 2016, I can confirm that my team are in the process of assessing the allegations that you make.

“They are in contact with Ipsa and we will then conduct our own enquiries to determine whether any criminal offences have been committed.”

Mr Danczuk is currently sitting as an independent MP after being suspended by the Labour party over separate allegations that he exchanged “explicit text messages” with a teenager in his Rochdale constituency.

The Independent has contacted Mr Danczuk for comment about the Scotland Yard investigation.

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