British Iraq war minister in expenses scandal

This video from Britain says about itself:

Shami Chakrabarti SAVAGES UK Minister Geoff “Buff” Hoon over the US attempts to BLACKMAIL Britain into silence over evidence of Torture.

Binyam Mohamed, a British resident held at the American base, has launched a legal challenge in the High Court in London for documents detailing his treatment to be made public.

From British weekly The Observer:

Geoff Hoon‘s home expenses come under spotlight

Minister lived in MoD flat while letting out London property and claiming expenses for his constituency house

* Toby Helm, Whitehall editor

* Sunday 5 April 2009 00.33 BST

Another cabinet minister was dragged into the row over MPs’ expenses last night when it emerged Geoff Hoon, the defence secretary during the Iraq war, claimed expenses on his constituency home and rented out his London house while living throughout the conflict in a grace-and-favour flat in Whitehall.

Hoon, who is now transport secretary, lived for three-and-a-half years in Admiralty House while the London property he registered as his “main residence” was let to a private tenant. This allowed the MP for Ashfield in Nottinghamshire to claim around £50,000 in expenses for running his constituency residence, which was entered as his “second home” with the Commons authorities, the Mail on Sunday reports.

Hoon, who is a trained barrister, insisted last night that he had stayed entirely within the rules and was using the system in the same way as many colleagues. “I only claimed whatever the rules allowed for. I assure you I had it properly checked out,” he said.

However, the revelations will add to pressure for swift changes in the pay and expenses regime for MPs. Home secretary Jacqui Smith is already under investigation by a Westminster watchdog over her decision to name her sister’s house in south London as her main residence, allowing her to claim expenses on her family home in Redditch, ­Worcestershire.

Employment minister Tony McNulty’s expenses claims for staying in a house lived in by his parents in London are also being examined by the parliamentary commissioner for standards, John Lyon.

See also here. And here. And here.

MP's money scandal, cartoon by Tim

HOME Secretary Jacqui Smith faced fresh pressure to justify her expenses claims on Monday after leaks suggested she had bought a BBQ, patio heater and toothbrush holder with taxpayers’ funds: here.

10 thoughts on “British Iraq war minister in expenses scandal

  1. Tory MP with a portfolio of 23 properties claims £100,000

    Nicholas Cecil, Chief Political Correspondent


    A CONSERVATIVE MP has claimed nearly £100,000 of taxpayer’s money for a second home while building up a portfolio of at least 23 properties.

    James Clappison, Tory MP for Hertsmere in Hertfordshire, is one of several MPs who have registered interests in a string of houses or flats. He declares 22 rented houses in Patrington, East Yorkshire, and in Withernsea, North Humberside, in the Commons Register of Members’ Interests.

    Mr Clappison has claimed £97,892 over seven years in public funds to run a second home, and is likely to have a further house or flat in his constituency or London. Five of the properties are registered in joint names with his wife. He has not broken any Commons rules.

    Ian Gibson, Labour MP for Norwich North, said: “He seems to have almost a village to himself. Some people appear to have so much money that they don’t need a foot up from the taxpayer for a second home.”

    Mr Clappison has built up his property portfolio over the years, having declared five rented houses in Patrington in 1998.

    More than 130 MPs are believed to rent out at least one property, with some letting far more. Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne declares rental income from two flats in London, as well as a house and a flat in Oxford. His bill to the taxpayer for a second home is lower than many MPs at £18,638 over three years.


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