I’m going to keep this short and simple.
As a non-MP, regular working or non-working, man or woman, if you commit benefit fraud with professional planning over a significant period of time or over multiple fraudulent claims this is the sentence you will receive based on how much you fraudulently “stole”:
£500K SP £750K – Start Point: 5 years. Range: 4 – 7 years
£100-500K SP £300K – Start Point: 4 years. Range: 3 – 5 years
£20-100K SP £60K – Start Point: 2 years. Range: 18 months – 3 years
This verdict will be decided by the courts.
However if you’re a member of our glorious, democratic parliament and you steal £90k in fraudulent claims:
- Pay back an amount decided by your peers (in this case £5,800 instead of the £45,000 recommended by the parliamentary standards commissioner)
- Say sorry
This verdict will be decided by your fellow members of parliament.
As far as I’m aware the law applies to anybody in the UK. Why do we continue to allow MPs to police themselves?
If someone tells the hidden truth about their government, they’re committing a crime.
If someone doesn’t tell the truth about themself to their government, they’re committing a crime.
If someone steals from you, the taxpayer, they’re committing a crime.
If your government steals from you, the taxpayer…
Motivation for this post came from the most recent MP expense scandal based around Maria Miller , Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport.