Former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson | Dan Kitwood/Getty Image | Dan Kitwood/Getty Images
Boris Johnson could be prosecuted over Brexit bus claim
Businessman wants to take ex-foreign secretary to court over £350m a week claim.
Updated 5/14/19, 10:59 PM CET
Boris Johnson could be prosecuted over claims that the U.K. sends £350 million a week to the EU that were plastered all over a bus that toured Britain during the Brexit referendum campaign.
According to the Financial Times, a businessman called Marcus Ball is bringing a private case against Johnson, a former foreign secretary, alleging that he committed misconduct in public office by endorsing the claim on the bus while knowing it to be untrue.
On the bus was written the widely discredited claim that “we send the EU £350m a week, let’s fund our NHS instead.”
A judge on Tuesday agreed to hold a hearing on the case on May 23, the same day that the U.K. will vote in the European Parliament election.
Ball said before Tuesday’s hearing, according to the FT: “This case is a world first, it has never happened before. A member of parliament has never been prosecuted for misconduct in public office based upon alleged lying to the public.
“My backers and I aspire to set a precedent in the U.K. common law making it illegal for an elected representative to lie to the public about financial matters.”