So the latest wheeze from some MPs is that they can't be prosecuted for expense fraud as such transactions are covered by the 1688 Bill of Rights namely
That the Freedome of Speech and Debates or Proceedings in Parlyament ought not to be impeached or questioned in any Court or Place out of ParlyamentThe logic they're trying to apply is that it counts as a "proceeding". Now the use of this document is a bit rich coming from a Parliament that gave us the "Proceeds of Crime Act". Here's how Wiltshire police describe it
Under the Proceeds of Crime Act, criminals can have their illegal earnings and possessions taken away – even if they are not convicted of the crimes they have committed.Now what do we find three paragraphs down from the MPs excuse -
That all Grants and Promises of Fines and Forfeitures of particular persons before Conviction are illegall and void.So they're convicting someone of possessing money obtained illegally, but haven't been able to convict them of the act where they supposedly obtained the money from. As I've said before the stance taken is that they can't prove they have the money/goods legally so it must be illegal. Now think how that works in this context - My parents bought a new television and passed on the old one to the neighbours who wanted another. As such the neighbours have no receipt that these goods were obtained legally, therefore they're illegal and the police can confiscate them if they choose. Yes it's unlikely, but still valid.
So once again we see MPs trying to do something they try to prevent us from doing, big surprise.