South Yorkshire MP jailed for expenses scam

Former Barnsley Central MP Eric Illsley has been jailed for 12 months for fiddling his expenses.

The 55 year old resigned on Tuesday as the member for Barnsley Central after he pleaded guilty last month to dishonestly claiming £14,500 of public money.

Illsley became the first sitting MP to be convicted for abusing expenses when he changed his pleas to guilty at the start of his trial on 11th January.

Illsley, of Westmoor Crescent, Pogmoor, Barnsley pleaded guilty to three charges of false accounting relating to three years of expenses on his London property.

The claims were made for council tax, telephone usage, service charges and maintenance, and insurance and repairs at his second home in Renfrew Road, Kennington, south London.

Despite the questions hanging over his expenses, Illsley was re-elected last May with a majority of more than 11,000 but after calls for him to go from both Prime Minister David Cameron and Labour leader Ed Miliband, he expressed ``deep regret'' over his actions and said he would quit before the court decided his fate.

The by-election for Illsley's Barnsley Central seat is expected to be held on March 3.