Political activist threatens Speaker with legal action

Mark Thomas, political activist, commentator, performer, writer and comedian has instructed his lawyers to write to the Speaker of the House of Commons threatening legal action unless a full transparent review is urgently ordered into the scandal of MPs expenses.

Mark asked the following of Speaker Michael Martin:

  • To obtain and publish independent authoritative legal advice & guidance on the meaning of the MPs’ expenses rules, to be consistent with other guidance applicable to the public where similar words are used
  • To appoint independent accountants to audit all claims by MPs in the current parliament against the legal advice and guidance obtained
  • To consider auditing all claims by MPs back to May 1997, applying consistent principles which would be applied in cases of false/excessive claims against other public authorities or the HMRC
  • To explain publicly what sums have been wrongly paid out to members and to set out proposals for recoupment where overpayments have been made, such recoupment to be no more favourable to MPs than the system for recovery of benefits overpayments or income tax underpayments
  • To report possibly fraudulent claims to the Metropolitan Police fraud squad for investigation.

The Speaker has 14 days to respond, failing which Judicial Review proceedings may follow.

Mark will be appealing to the public to fund his Judicial Review.

Read the full text.


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