Page last updated at 17:10 GMT, Monday, 6 July 2009 18:10 UK

MP 'sorry' over hotel film claims

Jeffrey Donaldson
Jeffrey Donaldson has apologised for claiming for room service

Lagan Valley MP Jeffrey Donaldson has said he was wrong to claim back the cost of hotel pay-per-view films on his parliamentary expenses.

The DUP representative said he had repaid more than £660 to the Commons' fees office.

At the weekend, the Daily Telegraph revealed Mr Donaldson had submitted 68 receipts related to films in 2004-5.

Mr Donaldson also said he regretted innuendo in some media that the films could have been pornographic in nature.

"I have been very clear about the nature of those films and what I was watching," he said.

"I did not at any time watch a film that was adult in nature.

"The films that I watched on pay TV would have been films that you would have seen in the cinema.

"Unfortunately, because of my security situation at the time, my family and I can't go to the cinema, so I took the opportunity to watch some of the films at the hotel."

His receipts for the year 2004-5 contained charges for room service, in-room media and Video Pay TV.

However, Mr Donaldson said he should not have claimed for these items.

"The room service charges were all on the hotel bills. I submitted the hotel bills in block to the fees office," he said.

"What I should have done was separate out the cost of the room service charges. I recognise that and that was wrong and that's why I repaid the room service charges for all of the items

"The items for rooms service charge should have been separated out from the hotel bills and I should have paid for those myself.

"It was wrong that I didn't pay for these items myself. I recognise that and that was why I repaid these items."



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