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PUBLISHED: 13:36 08 October 2009 | UPDATED: 17:14 25 August 2010

GUILTY: Ian Clement got away with a suspended sentence.

GUILTY: Ian Clement got away with a suspended sentence.

SHAMED former London deputy mayor Ian Clement publicly apologised after he escaped a jail sentence after admitting fraud charges.

SHAMED former London deputy mayor Ian Clement publicly apologised after he escaped a jail sentence after admitting fraud charges.

The 44-year-old, of Heatherbank Close, Crayford, was ordered to carry out 100 hours of unpaid work and handed a suspended jail sentence on Tuesday at Westminster Magistrates Court.

Clement faced up to six months in jail for claiming for two meals with his lover Claire Dowson on his Greater London Authority credit card, whilst claiming he was with leaders of two London borough councils in order to get them past the Mayor's finance office.

He used the same excuse whilst working in his £127,000-per-year government and external relations role while he wined and dined a PR executive at a Chinese restaurant, bills totalling £156.

After his sentence, the former leader of Bexley council said: "I have failed to live up to the high standards of office that were properly expected of me.

"I have given many years of dedicated public service to London, which has been my pride, my passion and my life. That is now over. There is no denial in regards to my responsibility.

"I very much regret and indeed am truly sorry for my actions and that these have let down many good people, my family, my friends and colleagues including and not least, the Mayor of London."

Clement was handed a 12-week sentence suspended for 18 months, concurrent on each of the three offences.

He is also forbidden from leaving his house between 9pm and 6am until the end of the sentence on December 29, and must pay £1,000 costs.

District judge, Quentin Purdy, told him: "You knew full well what was required in using a corporate credit card and you arrogantly believed yourself to be above the rules.

"Your dishonesty is now clear for all to see and dishonesty it plainly was."

Clement resigned from his post as deputy mayor in June this year.

He was given a final written warning by Mayor Boris Johnson after it was discovered he was paying for Sainsbury's shopping with the card.

martin.sawden@archant.co.uk


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