Paterson Case: BoJo May Be Brought to Justice Over Gov’t ‘Acting Like a Mobster to Its Own MPs’

© AP Photo / Matt DunhamBritish Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki at the start of their meeting inside 10 Downing Street, in London, Friday, Nov. 26, 2021
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki at the start of their meeting inside 10 Downing Street, in London, Friday, Nov. 26, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 26.11.2021
The Good Law Project described the allegations of the British government’s financial pressure on the MPs as “shocking stuff”, which “undermines” Parliament and “weakens” the lawmakers.
The UK-based political non-profit company Good Law Project (GLP) has said in a piece that it had sent a letter to Michael Gove, British secretary for levelling up, housing and communities, in connection with media reports that the government tried to force lawmakers to support Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s attempts to spare Tory MP Owen Paterson from suspension.

According to the reports, Downing Street threatened that it would withdraw “levelling up” cash from the constituencies of Conservative MPs who refuse to back Johnson’s botched efforts to help Paterson avoid punishment for breaking parliamentary lobbying rules.

In a piece published on its website on Friday, the GLP argued that the government is “acting like a mobster to its own MPs”.
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The company added that they had sent a pre-action protocol letter to Michael Gove “inviting him to deny, if he can, that the alleged [government] conduct happened, to turn over any documents evidencing it, and to stop the threats”.
The GLP argued that the media reports about the Whitehall’s threats on the withdrawal of “levelling up” funding “suggest a very serious misuse of public money, in the realms of criminal conduct, by or for the Prime Minister”.
The GLP also promised that they would not “stand by and watch”, describing the allegations of the government’s financial blackmail as “shocking stuff”, which had not been rejected by ministers.

'Sleaze' Scandal

The pledge comes amid the ongoing criticism of Prime Minister Johnson over the so-called sleaze row.
Earlier this month, a report conducted by parliamentary commissioner for standards Kathryn Stone found that Paterson, the former Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, lobbied the government on behalf of two companies, which paid him more than £100,000 annually. The report, approved by a group of cross-party MPs, recommended a 30-day suspension for Paterson.
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Instead of punishing the 65-year-old, Johnson's government decided to reform a parliament standards system that found Paterson guilty of violating lobbying rules, but finally made a U-turn and scrapped the proposed reform after the news caused a wide outcry from MPs and the public.
Sir Keir Starmer, leader of the opposition Labour Party, slammed the government as "corrupt", while Johnson told a committee of MPs that a “mistake” was made by his government over the Paterson case, refusing, however, to extend apologies.
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