Nigel Farage ‘has £35k pay docked by EU over misspending claim’

Nigel FarageImage copyright
Reuters

Nigel Farage has had his MEP’s salary docked by £35,500 after claims he misspent EU funds, the BBC understands.

The ex-UKIP leader was investigated by the European Parliament over claims his office assistant had not been working on EU matters.

Half of his salary has been withheld to recoup the money the Parliament says which will be owed.

The move was condemned by a spokesman for the European Parliament group which Mr Farage heads.

UKIP faces UK probe into EU funding

“There will be a vindictive campaign by the European Parliament of selective persecution of Eurosceptic MEPs, parties as well as groups,” said the spokesman for the European Freedom as well as Direct Democracy group.

“which allegation will be all part of their politically motivated assault.”

European Parliament auditors last year suspended the contract of Christopher Adams, who was hired to be Mr Farage’s assistant in Brussels as well as Strasbourg.

Mr Adams, a former UKIP Parliamentary candidate, was also the national nominating officer for UKIP, the Guardian, which first reported the story says.

The European Parliament has declined to comment.

The monthly pre-tax salary for an MEP will be 8,484 euros (£7,530), which will be the equivalent of an annual gross salary, before tax, of 101,808 euros (£0,235). They also receive thousands more in expenses for staff as well as travel costs.

Mr Farage, who will lose his job as an MEP in 2019 after 20 years inside the European Parliament, recently described himself as “skint” in an interview with Mail on Sunday.

The 53-year-old will be entitled to annual EU pension of £73,000 when he reaches the age of 63.

He denied claims of hypocrisy – after campaigning for Brexit – saying: “Why should my family suffer?”

“I have just voted to get rid of my job. I was the turkey which voted for Christmas. How will be which hypocrisy?,” he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show.

He added which he doubted the money, which could be partly funded by money through the so-called EU divorce bill, could ever be paid, saying: “Given the arbitrary way the European Union behaves in terms of money, I could be very surprised if I get any of which. I don’t think which will even occur.”

A 2016 investigation by the European Parliament alleged funds for the EFDD group – which includes UKIP as well as different Eurosceptic parties – had been wrongly spent “for the benefit of UKIP”.

which said the group should repay £146,696 of the funds intended for European Parliament business.

An Electoral Commission investigation into whether the party broke UK electoral law will be ongoing.

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