Chris Huhne's 'final insult' as he puts iPad on expenses
Shamed former MP bought £600 tablet shortly before pleading guilty to speeding lie
DISGRACED former MP Chris Huhne bought a £600 iPad on expenses shortly before he pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice and quit parliament, it emerged today.
The Daily Mail reports the ex-Energy Secretary bought a top-of-the-range iPad tablet in the weeks before his case went to court. The Sun said the move was the millionaire former financier's "final insult", while TaxPayers' Alliance head Matthew Sinclair described the timing as "utterly cynical".
Huhne, who could face a jail term after pleading guilty to avoiding speed points, is also expected to leave the Commons with a £70,000 severance package - £53,150 for winding up his MP's office as well as a £17,207 pay-off after quitting cabinet.
The news of his iPad purchase came after the 58-year-old admitted asking his ex-wife Vicky Pryce to take speeding points for him almost a decade ago. Pryce, whom he left in 2010 for girlfriend Carina Trimingham, remains on trial for perverting the course of justice but denies the allegations on the grounds of martial coercion.
Giving evidence at the trial at Southwark Crown Court today, Sunday Times political editor Isabel Oakeshott, who first published the speeding allegations, told the court Pryce was "very, very hurt" by the breakdown of her 26-year marriage to Huhne. According to the BBC, Oakeshott told the court: "I think it was very clear that she wanted to expose what she saw as his true character."
The by-election to replace Huhne as MP in Eastleigh will be held on 28 February.