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2013-03-08 10:12

REGRETFUL: Vicky Pryce, ex-wife of the former UK energy minister, has landed them both in hot water by telling a newspaper how she took the blame for her husband's speeding offence.

LONDON, England - The former wife of Britain's disgraced former energy minister Chris Huhne has been found guilty of distorting the course of justice in a case that ended his political career.

A jury convicted Vicky Pryce, a 60-year-old Greek-born economist, of taking speeding demerit points for her former husband in an incident in 2003.

Huhne admitted the same charge at an earlier hearing. Each faces jail when they are sentenced.
NO WAY OUT


Pryce stood open-mouthed in the dock as the jury at Southwark Crown Court in London unanimously rejected her defence of marital coercion. A jury in Pryce's original trial in February 2013 failed to reach a verdict, prompting a retrial.

Judge Nigel Sweeney said Pryce should be under "no illusions" about the likelihood of a stretch in prison despite the fact that he was granting her bail until sentencing.

The charges relate to an incident in March 2003 when Pryce claimed to be the driver when Huhne's car was caught by a speed camera as it travelled between Stansted Airport near London and the capital.

Pryce used the defence of marital coercion, claiming Huhne forced her to accept the points on her licence because he would have been banned from driving if he had taken them.

The couple went through a bitter divorce in 2011 after 26 years of marriage during which they had three children.

HEFTY CONSEQUENCES

Huhne left Pryce in 2010 for Carina Trimingham, a staff member on his general election campaign. Pryce then took the story about the speeding points to a British newspaper, only to see both her and Huhne charged with misrepresenting the course of justice.

Huhne, a former leadership candidate among the Liberal Democrats, the junior partners in Britain's coalition government, stood down from the British Cabinet in 2012. He resigned from his seat in parliament on February 5, 2013.

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