>Disgraced former Livingston Labour MP Jim Devine has been sentenced to 16 months in prison for defrauding his election expenses, the BBC reports. At most, he’ll actually serve 8 months inside, so he’ll be home for Christmas. According to his lawyer, if he behaves well, he could be out in 4 months just in time for my birthday. For the avoidance of doubt, though, he’s not invited.
His crime, described by the judge as a “calculated and deliberate” defrauding of public money, was deemed not to be as serious as David Chaytor’s, who is serving 18 months, but more serious than Elliot Morley’s, who’s in for a year.
This, I guess, brings to an end the litany of surreal and bizarre stories of Devine’s tenure as my local MP. From a press story not long after he was elected in which he talked about a random woman sending him an interesting picture at himself after he’d met her at an event, to stories of bullying staff, to being ordered to pay damages by an Industrial Tribunal to bankruptcy to imprisonment. It doesn’t make pleasant reading at all. For more background information, you might want to read the post I wrote when he was found guilty about the inglorious end to his chaotic career.