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Hanningfield 'can name 50 peers who clock in'

Lord Hanningfield, who served nine weeks of a nine-month sentence in 2011 for falsely claiming £28,000 in parliamentary expenses, suggested it was normal practice for peers to "clock-in" and that "I can name 50 that do it. I see the same people go in and out as I do. I don't want to be persecuted."

Speaking to the Daily Mirror, he said:

Lots of peers go in and check in for their expenses, but they are using their expenses for a lot of things, entertaining, meeting people, employing people.

Clocking in and out of Parliament is only part of being a peer.

By the time I have people at home to help, time I have people in the House of Lords to help me, I spend something like £150 a day on expenses, so I don't really make any profit.

I have to live, don't I? I don't do anything else. How do you think I am going to eat, how am I going to pay my electricity bills?

My income from the Lords will be about £30,000 a year, I pay about that in £18,000 in expense to other people, I'll end up with £12,000 a year."

I can name 50 that do it. I see the same people go in and out as I do. I don't want to be persecuted.

Peer defends 'clocking in' to claim £300 expenses

Lord Hanningfield has defended regularly "clocking in" to claim a £300 daily attendance allowance. Credit: PA Wire

A peer has defended "clocking in" to claim a £300 daily attendance allowance, despite spending less than 40 minutes inside the House of Lords 11 times out of 19 occasions in July.

The Daily Mirror alleges that on 11 of the 19 days that it monitored the peer's movements in July, he travelled to Westminster from his home in Essex, but spent less than 40 minutes in the Lords before returning.

There is no suggestion that the former Conservative member broke any rules.

Confronted about the claims by the newspaper, Lord Hanningfield said: "Being a lord is not just going in the House of Lords. It's the post you have. I have 15 letters a day, I have all sorts of things like that.

"I can do some of it at home, some of it at my office in the Lords.

"I admit I don't go much into the main chamber. If you look at my records since October it's changed dramatically because I've spoken twice.

"Let me explain again. I was trying to get myself organised after a nervous breakdown, a traumatic period."

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