Ashley Mote MEP, a former UKIPer (who even they wouldn’t have in the party more than a few weeks) who went on to join the controversial far right “Identity, Sovereignty, Tradition” group in the European Parliament, is a bit of a hero of mine.
He’s been tirelessly fighting the evil Brussels money wasting machine ever since he was elected on the UKIP ticket back in 2004 – and now, finally, after a trial that’s been dragged out for a good three years… he’s been done for fraudulently claiming Â£73,000 in state benefits.
No idea how much the trial will have cost, but considering an MEP’s salary is somewhere in the region of Â£60,000 (not including expenses, etc.) that means he’s managed to syphon off – at the bare minimum – a quarter of a million pounds at taxpayers’ expense.
Plus, hilariously – and almost unbelievably – Mote is not only a member of the European Parliament’s Committee on Budgetary Control (he he he!), but also a substitute on the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs. A financial fraudster. On the committees for Budgetary Control and Economic and Monetary Affairs. Perfect!
He’s even had the gall to challenge the procedures in place to scrutinise the EU’s accounts (e.g.) and to attack the British government for *ahem* wasting taxpayers’ money on the EU (he he he!). And if that’s not brilliant enough, he’s also had the balls to accuse the EU of – wait for it – not doing enough to combat fraud!
In other words, had he not got so many close ties to pretty much every anti-EU party in Brussels, and were it not for UKIP’s poor scrutiny of its candidates (or is that simply desperation for any candidates?) having allowed him to get elected on the dodgy list system in the first place, Mote could have been an ideal example of the rampant corruption that’s supposedly endemic in the EU for the anti-EU lot to use at every given opportunity. As it is he’s just yet another example of how so many nutty single-issue political groups can’t be trusted to do anything right. Hurrah!
I love Ashley Mote. Almost as much value for money as Robert Kilroy Silk (remember him?)