Former Brighton and Hove MEP convicted of £500k expenses fraud

Posted On 19 May 2015 at 9:31 am

One of Brighton and Hove’s former MEPs Ashley Mote has been convicted of defrauding almost £500,000 in expenses from the European Parliament.

Mote, 79, of Binsted, Hampshire, was found guilty of 11 charges, all of which he denied at his trial at Southwark Crown Court.

A jury convicted Mote of

  • four counts of obtaining a money transfer by deception
  • three counts of false accounting
  • two counts of fraud
  • one count of acquiring criminal property
  • one count of concealing criminal property and theft

Mote said that the money had been used to pay whistleblowers during his five years as a Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for South East England from 2004 to 2009.

Ashley Mote

Ashley Mote

He claimed a further £250,000 in legitimate expenses.

Mote was elected as a member of the UK Independence Party (UKIP) but expelled before he could take up his seat when he was charged with benefit fraud before becoming an MEP.

He was convicted on 21 counts of benefit fraud in 2007 and sentenced to nine months in prison. He continued sitting as an Independent MEP.

After his latest trial, at Southwark, Mote was released on conditional bail by the judge Sir Jeremy Stuart-Smith until a date could be set for his sentencing.

Mr Justice Stuart-Smith told Mote that there was a very strong likelihood that he would be sent to jail again.

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