Did you know MEPs get handed £120,000 in expenses and don't have to provide a single receipt?

Court case highlights the weird expenses system

MEPs are able to claim £120,000 without any “real proof” of how the money is spent.

Members of the European Parliament are entitled to the money without submitting receipts.

It’s not a new rule but it has come under the spotlight this week as a court case rumbles on into whether MEP Peter Skinner used his expenses to pay £10,000 to his ex-wife.

Skinner claimed the maximum of £480,000 for staff over five years and is accused of using this money for repairing a car, hotel stays, restaurants and jewellery.

EU expenses chief Frank Antoine-Poirel, who is tasked with deciding between honest mistakes and when MEPs have deliberately misused funds, said: “It would create an administrative burden for members and the consequences on the freedom of actions for the members so we do not want to interfere with their detailed political activities.”

He added: “We trust members, so when they declare things have been done according to the rules, it’s our decision to confirm whether the payments have been reasonable.”

Kent-based Skinner said the money was being set aside in his account as a “redundancy reserve” and denies the charges.

The case is ongoing.

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