Chris Huhne Resigns: He's Entitled To A £17,000 Payout

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Chris Huhne could get over £17,000 as a severance payment following his resignation as energy secretary.

The Cabinet Office has said that Huhne is allowed three months' worth of his £68,827pa salary under the 1991 Ministerial and Other Pensions and Salaries Act, £17,207.

Huhne resigned on Friday morning after the Crown Prosecution Service confirmed he would be charged with perverting the court of justice. "The Crown Prosecution Service’s decision today is deeply regrettable. I’m innocent of these charges and I intend to fight this in the courts and I’m confident that a jury will agree.

“So as to avoid any distraction to either my official duties or my trial defence, I am standing down and resigning as Energy and Climate Change Secretary. I will of course continue to serve my constituents in Eastleigh.”

In his resignation letter to the PM, Huhne said he would mount a "robust defence" against the charges, adding: "I have concluded that it would be distracting both to that effort and to my official duties if I were to continue in office."

Chris Evans, Labour MP for Islwyn, said Huhne should turn down the cash: “Last year Chris Huhne stood with Sayeeda Warsi as she called for former Cabinet Ministers to forfeit their severance pay. If he didn't agree with her, he should have said so - so he should now forfeit the £17,207 he is entitled to.

“And if the Tories don't make it clear that they believe Chris Huhne should give up this payment, it will be clear that they think there's one rule for them and their Liberal Democrat friends and another for everyone else.”