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Four politicians to face charges over expenses

FOUR politicians will face criminal charges over their expenses, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has said.

MPs Elliot Morley, Jim Devine, David Chaytor and peer Lord Hanningfield will face charges under the Theft Act.

In a joint statement the MPs said they denied any wrongdoing and would "defend our position robustly".

Police have investigated a number of cases since expenses revelations were first published last May.Labour peer Lord Clarke will not be charged but a sixth case remains under investigation.

In an announcement outside the headquarters of the Crown Prosecution Service Director of Public Prosecutions Keir Starmer said files had been reviewed carefully by senior CPS lawyers aided by "an external and highly experienced criminal QC".

He added: "In four cases, we have concluded that there is sufficient evidence to bring criminal charges and that it is in the public interest to charge the individuals concerned.

"Accordingly, summonses in these cases have been obtained from the City of Westminster Magistrates’ Court and will now be served on the individuals in question."