Ex-MEP Nikki Sinclaire charged with money laundering and misconduct

Nikki Sinclaire - archive image Nikki Sinclaire lost her European Parliament seat in May this year

Former MEP Nikki Sinclaire has been charged with money laundering and misconduct in public office.

Ms Sinclaire, 45, who represented the West Midlands for UKIP, then as an independent, will appear at Birmingham Magistrates' Court on 17 September.

She is accused of making false and dishonest submissions for travelling expenses and transferring the proceeds of fraud through a bank account.

She said she "strongly refuted" the charges and would be defending herself.

The offences allegedly occurred between 1 October 2009 and 31 July 2010.

'Ludicrous allegations'

Ms Sinclaire was elected as a UKIP MEP in 2009 but was expelled from the party the following year in a row over its membership of the Europe of Freedom and Democracy grouping.

She remained in the European Parliament as an independent before forming the We Demand A Referendum Now Party in 2012, but lost her seat in elections held last May.

She was originally arrested on 22 February 2012 and has since been on police bail.

Three other people were also arrested but will face no further action.

Ms Sinclaire said: "I am disappointed that the police have chosen to charge me with the above offences without questioning me on them, after a two-and-a-half-year investigation.

"The charges relate to my time as a UKIP MEP when I was under the guidance and oversight by the party in the Parliament. This will prove pivotal in resolving the matter.

"During my time as an MEP I put in more than £120,000 of my salary into the cost of my work activities.

"It was also me, who in 2010, drew the attention of the West Midlands Police, to irregularities I discovered had taken place, without my knowledge, in my UKIP office.

"I am certain I shall be found innocent of these ludicrous and unfounded accusations."

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Birmingham & Black Country

Weather

Birmingham

11 °C 9 °C

Features

  • Witley Court in Worcestershire Abandoned mansions

    What happened to England's lost stately homes?


  • Tray of beer being carried10 Things

    Beer is less likely to slosh than coffee, and other nuggets


  • Spoon and buckwheatSoul food

    The grain that tells you a lot about Russia's state of mind


  • Woman readingWeekendish

    The best reads you need to catch up on


Elsewhere on the BBC

  • filmsTop films

    Which movies should you watch in December? BBC Culture finds out

Programmes

  • All-inclusive holidaysThe Travel Show Watch

    With all-inclusive holidays seeing a resurgence are local trades missing out to big resorts?

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.