Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Judge throws out appeal by expenses cheat ex Labour MP David Chaytor who fraudulently claimed £22,000, he got a light sentence!

Dear All

Former Labour MP David Chaytor was found guilty of expenses fraud.

He changed his plea to guilty in order to get a lesser sentence.

Then after a short spell in prison, he was moved to Club Fed, an open prison, fast track to a cushy existence.

Scotland’s Nelson Mandela is banged up in Barlinnie, no Club Fed for him.

With sweet FA to do with his time, David Chaytor decided that he wasn’t happy with a lesser sentence and wanted more off.

So he has stuck in an appeal.

And the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Judge and two other judges promptly tossed that appeal out on its arse.

Appeal refused.

Chaytor forged tenancy documents and invoices to falsely claim more than £22,000 of taxpayers' money for rent and IT work from the Commons authorities.

The problem with Chaytor was that he was involved in a multiple fraud!

His 18-month prison term stands.

Announcing the decision, Lord Judge, sitting with Mr Justice Henriques and Mr Justice Foskett, said:

“This was a grave breach of trust and there was a further aggravating feature of this case. It is difficult to exaggerate the levels of public concern at the revelation of significant abuse of the expenses system by some Members of Parliament.
'Some elected representatives, vested with the responsibility for making the laws which govern us all, betrayed the public trust.”

He added:

“There was incredulous consequent public shock. The result was serious damage to the reputation of Parliament, with correspondingly reduced confidence in our priceless democratic system and the processes by which it is implemented and we are governed. This element of damage caused by the appellant and others cannot be valued in monetary terms, but it is nonetheless real, and the impact of what has been done will not dissipate rapidly.”

The chances of a successful appeal in my opinion were nil.

If you think about the evidence speaks for itself loudly.

And it wasn’t accidental either!

Lord Judge said of Chaytor:

“This sad fall from grace was entirely self-inflicted.”
No one forced Chaytor to do what he did, he was using his elected position for his own advantage and he was paid a decent salary, with an interesting career.

Lord Judge added:

“As a Member of Parliament, the appellant was entitled, within prescribed rules, to claim for expenses incurred by him in the course of fulfilling the responsibilities of his office. The rules are set out in a document known as the Green Book, published by the House of Commons Department of Resources, which was also responsible for the administration of the expenses claims system.”

Lord Judge also added:

“Until what became known as the "expenses scandal", it was an essential feature of the operation of the scheme that Members of Parliament were invariably treated as honest, trustworthy people and the unwritten assumption was that only claims for expenses genuinely incurred in accordance with the rules would be made.”

Now, trust in politicians is bouncing along the deck.

And justly so, in some cases we get very good politicians from all parties but there is still are hard core of bad politicians who don’t serve the communities they represent, just their party interest.

They haven’t grasped the best way to serve their party’s interest is ensuring they provide as best they can a good service on behalf of the people.

Chaytor just wasted the Court’s time, this was never a runner.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University