Sixth British lawmaker charged in expenses scandal

16th July 2010, Comments 0 comments

British prosecutors said Friday they were charging a member of the House of Lords for allegedly claiming thousands of pounds in fradulent expenses, the sixth person charged after a major scandal.

Lord John David Beckett Taylor, who was a member of Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative party until he was ejected in February because of the police investigation, faces six charges of false accounting.

Taylor, the first black Tory peer, is accused of dishonestly claiming more than 11,000 pounds (17,000 dollars, 13,000 euros) in parliamentary expenses between March 2006 and October 2007 and will appear in court on August 13.

He is alleged to have told parliamentary authorities that he was living outside London so he could claim car mileage and the cost of staying in the capital, when in fact he was living in the city.

"We concluded that there is sufficient evidence and it is in the public interest to bring criminal charges against Lord Taylor," said Keir Starmer, director of public prosecutions.

Five current and former parliamentarians have already been charged following the expenses scandal, which broke last year after the Daily Telegraph newspaper obtained details of lawmakers' costly and often outlandish claims.

Three former and one current member of parliament (MP) from ex-premier Gordon Brown's Labour party have been charged, as has a suspended Tory peer.

Parliamentary authorities have put into place a tough new expenses regime in the wake of the row.

© 2010 AFP

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