Former UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson (File photo)
Former UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson (File photo)

UK court quashes case against Boris Johnson over Brexit claims

ANI | Updated: Jun 08, 2019 06:49 IST

London [UK], Jun 8 (ANI): A UK court on Friday dismissed a case against former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson over allegations that he lied to the public during the 2016 Brexit referendum campaign.
The judges of the High Court quashed the case which was filed by Marcus Bell, an anti-Brexit campaigner who crowdfunded more than 350,000 pounds to bring his claim to the courts, Euronews reported.
Johnson, who is running for the prime ministerial post, is accused of falsely claiming that the UK's membership of the European Union cost 350 million pounds a week.
The claim was even plastered on the side of a bus that had toured around the country during the referendum in which 52 per cent of the electorate had voted in favour of the UK leaving the European bloc.
Johnson's lawyers have rejected the claims that an offence was committed by him while serving in public office, saying that such allegations were repeatedly challenged during the 2016 campaigning.
Ball's counsel Jason Coppel said that the decision could allow "well-funded defendants to knock out proceedings before it started" and claimed that Johnson's Brexit "lies" had a "direct impact on public trust."
Reacting to the development, Home Secretary Sajid Javid said he was "very glad" to see the case thrown out by the judges.
"Very glad to see the court case against @BorisJohnson thrown out. Freedom of speech feels increasingly challenged - we should always seek to debate political arguments in the open rather than close them down," he tweeted.
Meanwhile, amid the Brexit chaos, British Prime Minister Theresa May on Friday formally resigned as the head of the Conservative Party, setting off the campaign among eleven parliamentarians to replace her, both as the party head and the country's premier.
However, May will remain the acting Prime Minister until a new leader is chosen. (ANI)