Michael Fabricant has been unconditionally cleared by Sir Thomas Legg’s review into MPs’ expenses. In common with all other Members of Parliament with constituencies outside London, Michael Fabricant received a letter from Sir Thomas Legg QC early Monday evening (12th October) following his audit of MPs’ expenses and allowances over the last 5 years. In his letter on Monday to Michael, Sir Thomas said: "In your case, having examined the records in the light of my interpretation of the rules and standards in force at the time, I have not identified any payments made to you under the ACA during the review period which I consider call for any repayment or further supporting evidence to be provided by you. Accordingly, my conclusion is that no action is required from you in this matter."
Michael now says: "This is a huge relief. I have been cleared. But all MPs have been under considerable strain particularly given that, contrary to his letter, Sir Thomas Legg has applied rules retrospectively which were not in force at the time. I had wondered whether I had unwittingly broken these new rules. I am glad I had not.
"The expenses affair has been a huge distraction and has cast a giant shadow over the integrity of all Members of Parliament. I am pleased and relieved that I have been vindicated and I hope now that new rules will be put in place which will be crystal clear and transparent to all.
"Meanwhile, serious questions need to be asked about the future of certain senior staff at the House of Commons. And given my clearance by Sir Thomas Legg, I feel entitled to ask them. A number of MPs from all parties have either been asked to provide receipts and other documentation missing from the House of Commons Department of Resources. Yet those MPs said they had filed that information with the Department when they made their original claim. If they had not done so, why were those MPs paid their expense claims in the first place? And if, as Legg as reported in a few instances, some MPs made totally improper claims under the rules that existed at the time, why were those claims paid at all? It seems that the officials at the very top of that Department have serious questions to answer.
"As a senior Party Whip, I serve on the Administration Committee of the House of Commons and I will be asking – in a personal capacity – that a full review now be conducted by the Committee into the overall management of the Department of Resources and into the rôle of senior management in this affair."
Last year, Michael Fabricant was the 569th least expensive of the 600 or so MPs based out of London.
Detailed photo shows the letter I received Monday evening from Sir Thomas Legg.