PracticeConsultingOnline Extra – ‘Cash for questions’ MP fined #1,000

Online Extra - 'Cash for questions' MP fined #1,000

Tim Smith, the accountant and former Northern Ireland minister who was forced to resign as the Tory MP for Beaconsfield before the General Election over the cash-for-questions scandal, has been fined #1,000 by the English ICA over his role in the scandal. Hooman Bassirian reports.

Smith was charged with bringing the accountancy profession into disrepute and faced expulsion from the ICA after Sir Gordon Downey, the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, severely criticised him last July in his report on the scandal,

However, Smith escaped with a reprimand, a fine of #1,000 and #2,150 costs, after he admitted to an ICA disciplinary tribunal that he improperly accepted’ around #18,000 from Harrods owner Mohamed Al Fayed in return for lobbying services.

Smith has also accepted a further charge that he failed to enter his financial interests in the House of Commons Register of Members’ Interests.

The ICA said it had decided not to expel Smith because of `the substantial positive contribution that the defendant had made to the profession in the wider sense over a very long period of time’.

A full report will appear in Accountancy Age on 15 Janauary 1998.

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