Boris Johnson will not face prosecution over £350m EU claim after court victory

Boris Johnson will not face a criminal prosecution over claims he made during the referendum campaign about the UK sending £350 million a week to the EU after winning a High Court challenge.

The former foreign secretary was handed a summons, issued by District Judge Margot Coleman on May 29, to attend Westminster Magistrates’ Court to face three allegations of misconduct in public office.

But, following a hearing in London on Friday, Lady Justice Rafferty and Mr Justice Supperstone overturned the earlier decision.

Addressing Mr Johnson’s barrister, Adrian Darbishire QC, Lady Justice Rafferty said: “We are persuaded, Mr Darbishire, so you succeed, and the relief that we grant is the quashing of the summonses.”

The judge said reasons for the court’s ruling will be given at a later date.

Marcus Ball
Marcus Ball has brought the case against the former foreign secretary (PA)

Mr Ball, 29, claimed Mr Johnson lied during the 2016 referendum campaign by saying Britain gave £350 million a week to the European Union.

He crowdfunded more than £300,000 through an online campaign to bring the prosecution.

The £350 million figure was emblazoned on the red campaign bus used by Vote Leave during the referendum, with the slogan saying “We send the EU £350 million a week, let’s fund our NHS instead”.

Mr Darbishire argued that the attempt to prosecute Mr Johnson was “politically motivated and vexatious”.

Mr Johnson, who is currently the front runner in the Conservative party leadership contest, did not have to appear and did not attend the High Court hearing.

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