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Last Updated: Friday, 20 July 2007, 10:19 GMT 11:19 UK
'No honours charges' - reaction
No-one will be charged following Scotland Yard's 16-month cash-for-honours investigation, the BBC understands. Figures from across the political spectrum give their reaction.

ANGUS MACNEIL, SNP MP WHO MADE COMPLAINT

We've had an investigation been going on for the past 16 months. There have been 6,300 documents at the end of that given by the Yard to the Crown Prosecution Service.

The Yard liaised with the CPS through all this, and now it seems the CPS are trying to tell us it's all a wild goose chase.

It seems quite extraordinary, I have to say.

JOHN MCTERNAN, EX-BLAIR AIDE WHO WAS INTERVIEWED

A lot of us, particularly my colleague Ruth Turner, were put under the spotlight and there was a lot of speculation about us which we couldn't answer because we were cooperating with the inquiry and not giving a running commentary on what was going on.

And so I think it's a massive relief for everybody involved in this that at last a line can be drawn under it.

SIR MENZIES CAMPBELL, LIBERAL DEMOCRAT LEADER

If these reports are true and there is no question of criminal charges, there still remain many questions of political responsibility.

This whole affair has diminished politics and politicians in the eyes of the public.

Never again must there be any question of any link between preferment and financial support.

SIR ALISTAIR GRAHAM, EX-CHAIRMAN OF STANDARDS COMMITTEE

There was a major ethical failure by the previous prime minister in allowing the last general election to be financed on a sea of debt, without declaring that.

And who knows what might have happened in the last general election if everybody had known how each party was funding its election campaign.

DENIS MACSHANE, LABOUR MP

If 12 years ago when I was in opposition I had written to Scotland Yard making allegations about how the Conservative party was raising its money - and there were terrific stories around - I'd have expected Scotland Yard to say to me: 'You're an MP, you have a unique privilege in this nation called privilege, out your case in Parliament.'

And what instead did happen was a letter comes in from the Scottish Nationalists, who've benefited politically enormously from this, and Scotland Yard went off down this putting people through the most impossible torture.

ELLFYN LLWYD, PLAID CYMRU MP WHO COMPLAINED TO THE POLICE ABOUT THE ALLEGATIONS

I said at the beginning that if the Met [Metropolitan Police] investigated thoroughly, which they obviously did, I would be satisfied.

In my view, politics has won out, because the happy coincidence of Mr A giving lots of money to the party becoming Lord A should cease.

We have at least, partially cleaned out the stable. To those who say a million pounds has been wasted I say it is a tiny amount of money being spent in Iraq and Afghanistan.

HARRIET HARMAN, DEPUTY LABOUR LEADER

It wouldn't be right for ministers to comment because the Crown Prosecution Service is independent and does its job independently, as the police do. But as far as party funding is concerned, we've - after the allegations - we did change the law to make sure that loans, as well as donations, have to be disclosed and made public.

We've got further discussions going on with the other political parties to make further changes in the funding of political parties. And we're going to reform the House of Lords. So, I think that a lot of change has come as a result of those allegations.

SIR ALAN SUGAR, FRIEND OF LORD LEVY

He (Lord Levy) has been under tremendous stress, aggravated by the newspapers who, obviously, you can't keep anything private in this day and age.

But it has been looming over his head, it's not nice to read in the newspapers every single day of your life that you're going to get possible criminal prosecution, and I've not been privy to any of the detail because obviously Michael Levy has had to keep it all to himself and his lawyers.

But no doubt one day we'll hear what it was all about, but some say that it should never have got this far.






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