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Former MP Simon Danczuk will not face charges over expenses

The Guardian logo The Guardian 13/02/2018 Frances Perraudin North of England reporter
Simon Danczuk said he made an error claiming extra accommodation costs for his two children to live with him in London. © Reuters Simon Danczuk said he made an error claiming extra accommodation costs for his two children to live with him in London. The former MP for Rochdale Simon Danczuk will not face criminal charges after a police investigation into his expenses.

In 2016 the politician, who lost his seat at the last general election, agreed to repay £11,583 after saying he made an error in claiming extra accommodation costs for his two eldest children to live with him at his second home in London.

Danczuk claimed £2,425 a year top-up cash from April 2012, but after an investigation by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa), he acknowledged that neither of the children had “routinely” stayed at the house.

A Crown Prosecution Service spokesperson said on Tuesday: “We received a file of evidence from the Metropolitan police in relation to an allegation contrary to section 10 of the Parliamentary Standards Act of 2009.

We considered the evidential test for prosecution was not met and therefore no charges were authorised.”

Danczuk was suspended by the Labour party in December 2015 for sending sexually explicit text messages to a teenage girl who approached him for work experience.

The scandal came after the politician played a leading role in campaigns to expose historical child sex abuse.

He added: “This is one of several ... police investigations I have had to put up with over the last three years and they have taken their toll.”Speaking to the Sun, Danczuk said: “I’m pleased to have been cleared, though I am very

concerned the Metropolitan police spent two years and a lot of money investigating.”

In a report into the case in March 2016, Ipsa’s compliance officer, Peter Davis, said: “The evidence points overwhelmingly to the conclusion that the MP obtained an increase to his accommodation expenditure budget by claiming

dependant uplifts for his two oldest children for a period of over three years, when at no point were either of the children routinely resident.

“The compliance officer must also conclude that this was done knowing that there was no reasonable prospect of the children staying at the accommodation.”

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