Boris Johnson will be summonsed to court to face accusations of misconduct in public office over claims he was lying when he said the UK gave the EU £350m a week.
The favourite to win the Tory leadership race faces a private prosecution by campaigner Marcus Ball.
Lawyers representing Mr Ball lodged an application to summons Mr Johnson to court, claiming he had deliberately misled the public during the Brexit referendum campaign in 2016 and then repeated the statement during the 2017 general election.
In a written decision, District Judge Margot Coleman said Mr Johnson will be summonsed to court.
She wrote: “The allegations which have been made are unproven accusations and I do not make any findings of fact.
“Having considered all the relevant factors I am satisfied that this is a proper case to issue the summons as requested for the three offences as drafted. The charges are indictable only.
“This means the proposed defendant will be required to attend this court for a preliminary hearing, and the case will then be sent to the Crown Court for trial.
“The charges can only be dealt with in the Crown Court.”
Decision of District Judge Margot Coleman in Ball v Boris Johnson delivered at Westminster MC today https://t.co/kDBPqZd8lr
— Judicial Office (@JudiciaryUK) May 29, 2019
Mr Ball has raised more than £200,000 through a ‘Brexit Justice’ crowdfunding campaign to pay for the private prosecution.