1. ITV Report

Chris Huhne's ex wife found guilty over taking points

Vicky Pryce has today been found guilty of perverting the course of justice. Photo: Press Association.

The ex-wife of former MP Chris Huhne was today found guilty of perverting the course of justice by taking his speeding points a decade ago.

Vicky Pryce, 60, of Crescent Grove, Clapham, south London, was found guilty by a jury of seven men and five women after a retrial at Southwark Crown Court.

Former energy secretary Huhne pleaded guilty last month to perverting the course of justice by passing his points to Pryce in 2003, ending his political career. Both now face jail and will be sentenced at a later date.

Vicky Pryce and her solicitor Robert Brown outside court following the verdict. Credit: ITV News

Ms Pryce's solicitor Robert Brown made a statement following his client's conviction.

Speaking outside Southwark Crown Court he said Ms Pryce was "very disappointed" with the guilty verdict. On her behalf, he also thanked those who had supported her through the "difficult period", including her children, friends and colleagues.

Following the conviction, a number of denials were issued over who had prior knowledge of the Vicky Pryce speeding points story.

Vince Cable and his wife Rachel said they have "no recollection" of discussing the issue of points with Ms Pryce. A statement read:

Vince and Rachel have no recollection of the issue of points being raised with them over the course of dinner with Vicky Price on 28 January 2011. They have consulted their personal records which confirm that the issue first came to their attention in May 2011 when the story broke in the press.

Miriam Gonzalez, the wife of Nick Clegg, also released a statement saying she had no prior knowledge of the speeding points story.

It reads: "I have never ever been told by Vicky or anybody else about the traffic points story. I got to know about this when everybody else did."

A court artist sketch of Vicky Pryce as the verdict is delivered at Southwark Crown Court. Credit: Priscilla Coleman

The points swapping allegations date back to 2003, when Huhne's black BMW was clocked speeding on the way back from Stansted Airport as the then-MEP travelled back from Strasbourg. Huhne already had nine points on his licence and risked a ban, something he feared would ruin his chances of being nominated as the Lib Dem candidate for Eastleigh, Hampshire.

Pryce said he made her take the points, waving a pen at her forcing her to sign a form. Huhne, now 58, lost his licence anyway later that year for another offence but went on to be nominated as the Lib Dem candidate for Eastleigh, winning the seat in 2005.

The allegation about the points-swapping became public in May 2011 when it was published in two Sunday newspapers - nearly a year after Huhne ended his 26-year marriage to Pryce. Huhne and Pryce were arrested, and in February last year were charged with perverting the course of justice.

Chris Huhne and Vicky Pryce will be sentenced together at a later date. Credit: Press Assocation

The retrial of Pryce was told that in an email sent to Sunday Times political editor Isabel Oakeshott, discussing the points swapping issue, Vicky Pryce wrote: "I have no doubt as I definitely want to nail him [Chris Huhne]. More than ever actually and would love to do it soon.”

The Daily Telegraph has the full email exchange between Oakeshott and Pryce.

Liberal Democrats deputy leader Simon Hughes has said the conviction of Vicky Pryce was "very sad" and it was clear from the trial that the case was a "marital issue" and not a "party political one".

Following Pryce's conviction, Vince Cable refused to answer questions about the outcome.

More on this story

  • Profile: Who is Vicky Pryce?

    The Greek-born former wife of Chris Huhne is a distinguished economist and has held positions in the private sector and civil service.