Democratic Unionist MP’s expenses under investigation

A British parliamentary watchdog is investigating Jim Shannon, the Democratic Unionist Party's MP for Strangford, over an expenses claim for travel and subsistence.

Mr Shannon, who has claimed more expenses than any other MP for the past two years, received £205,798 in expenses last year, excluding travel costs.

The compliance officer for the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, Peter Davis, said he had "opened an investigation to determine whether Mr Jim Shannon MP has been paid an amount under the MPs' scheme of business costs and expenses that should not have been allowed".

Mr Shannon, who became an MP in 2010, has previously defended the high level of his expenses on the basis of his heavy workload and the high cost of travelling from his north Down constituency to London.

Denis Staunton

Denis Staunton

Denis Staunton is China Correspondent of The Irish Times