Nowadays, MPs’ expenses claims are vetted by IPSA to ensure that the spectre of duck houses and flipped mortgages don’t darken Westminster once more. But occasionally the odd claim or two gets approved which seems, er, somewhat incongruous: Zarah Sultana’s ring light and Angela Rayner’s personalised airpods are just two of the more examples.
And, perusing the data today, Mr S stumbled across a similarly shocking claim made by the disgraced former MP Imran Ahmad Khan. Six months ago, Steerpike revealed that Ahmad Khan had billed the taxpayer £3,218 for legal costs after being charged with child sexual assault, for which he was subsequently jailed. And today, IPSA expense claims show that Ahmad Khan billed a further £8,578 for removal costs and £2,858 in maintenance, redecorations and repairs – even after he had begun his 18 month jail sentence.
The Wakefield MP was jailed on 23 May 2022 but still charged more than £11,000 in costs to the taxpayer over the following two months. Anneliese Dodds, Labour Party Chair, told Mr S: ‘The public will be rightly shocked that someone under investigation for such a reprehensible crime could seemingly cash in on his expenses. He should pay back this money immediately.’ He even bought a £1,438 Apple device on 6 April, in the midst of his two-week trial, and was convicted just five days later. The device was returned but why on earth was he allowed to file a claim in the first place, given the timing?
Given he’s currently still serving his sentence, Steerpike certainly won’t be holding his breath…