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Statement from Liberal Democrats on Danzcuk verdict

March 29, 2016 8:54 AM

Despite the parliamentary watchdog IPSA finding "overwhelming evidence" that Rochdale MP Simon Danzcuk claimed expenses for two children that were not living with him, the Labour MP has been simply been ordered to pay back the £11,000 in false claims, with no further sanctions against him. The false claims amounted to more than six months wages for an average worker in Rochdale, who he claims to represent.

David Hennigan, who made the complaints against Simon Danczuk, said: "Looking at the findings it is clear to me that Mr Danczuk set out to defraud the taxpayer. He made enquiries about how much he would get by registering two children he didn't see, for material gain. He then went through with the claim knowingly that he was defrauding the taxpayer. Of course, I welcome the fact that he has to pay a significant amount of money back.

"I will therefore be referring this as promised to both Greater Manchester Police and Scotland Yard and formally asking them to launch an investigation. Danczuk has been caught and now should face the consequences."

Lib Dem Leader in Rochdale Councillor Andy Kelly said: "This is a whitewash - pure and simple. I'm disgusted that Danczuk's only punishment at present appears to be paying the money back. We will not rest though and will be officially asking for the Police to take over. I'm afraid IPSA's handling of this whole affair puts their whole reputation in jeopardy. IPSA was set up to improve people's confidence in transparency after the MP's scandal. This verdict does the opposite and it sends out a clear message to MPs that they can practically get away with the most blatant example of fiddling in years."