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Peter Skinner used money for staff costs on luxuries

Former Labour MEP used public money for ex-wife’s car and trip to Hawaii

A former Labour MEP from Kent has been ordered to pay £85,436.96 to satisfy a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Peter Skinner used money meant for office staff costs on repairs for his ex-wife’s Land Rover Discovery, making monthly divorce settlement payments and on a honeymoon to the US and Hawaii with his second wife.

The 58-year-old, MEP for south-east England between 1994 and 2014, was jailed for four years in 2016.

He had been convicted of one count of fraud, one count of false accounting and one count of making a false instrument.

Following Skinner’s conviction, a confiscation hearing was conducted at Southwark Crown Court in October 2017.

Mrs Justice McGowan’s written ruling came at Southwark Crown Court, sitting at the Royal Courts of Justice, yesterday.

It ordered Skinner to pay the confiscation order of £85,436.96 within three months, with a 12-month term in default.

Skinner was also ordered to pay £10,000 in confiscation costs and £50,000 in prosecution costs, with six months to pay.

Detective Inspector Annie Clayton said: “Peter Skinner served as an MEP for 20 years and badly let down those who supported and trusted him throughout his time in office.

“The abuse of his position to enhance his own lifestyle resulted in a prison sentence and now a confiscation order to the value of £85,436.96.

“This should send a message to offenders that once they have been sentenced we will continue to investigate to recover any financial gain they have made from their activities and to reimburse victims where appropriate.

“We will use the legislation that is available to seize any cash or property that we can prove they have obtained through criminal behaviour.”

Skinner was succeeded as MEP by Labour’s Anneliese Dodds.

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