Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Denis MacShane 'like William Roache' after leaving jail over fraud

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionMacShane, 65, compared himself to the Coronation Street star William Roache, who was cleared of sex offences on Thursday

Former Labour MP Denis MacShane has compared himself to Coronation Street star William Roache after he was released from jail.

MacShane, 65, served six weeks of a six-month sentence for expenses fraud. Mr Roache was cleared of rape.

MacShane was jailed after he admitted submitting 19 fake receipts of £12,900.

The ex-Rotherham MP said former director of public prosecutions, Keir Starmer, had been "very keen" on celebrity prosecutions.

"It's been quite a week for the celebrity prosecution people Keir Starmer was very keen on. Bill Roache yesterday, me today. It's Keir Starmer's little angels," he told the Daily Mirror as he left Brixton prison.

'Considerable dishonesty'

MacShane was Rotherham MP for 18 years and served as Europe minister under Tony Blair between 2002 and 2005.

He described prison as a "humbling, rewarding and enriching" experience but added he was "glad to be out".

"I have been well treated by the prisoners. I have learnt a lot. I have lost weight. I am fitter now than I have been for the last 10 years."

At the Old Bailey in London last November, MacShane admitted false accounting by putting in fake receipts for £12,900 of "research and translation" services.

He had used the money to fund trips to the continent.

The former MP was told when he was sentenced in December he had "deliberately created misleading and deceptive invoices", and "considerable" dishonesty was involved.

Mr Justice Sweeney however did accept his contention that there was no personal profit made.

MacShane, he said, had incurred genuine expenses which he could have legitimately claimed for but instead he had recouped the money through dishonest methods.

More on this story