Sheridan jailed for three years


Former Scottish Socialist Party leader Tommy Sheridan has been jailed for three years for perjury

Former Scottish Socialist Party leader Tommy Sheridan has been jailed for three years for perjury.

The disgraced politician was convicted last month of lying during his successful defamation action against the News of the World in 2006.

After a three-month trial at the High Court in Glasgow, Sheridan, 46, was found guilty of lying about the newspaper’s claims that he was an adulterer who visited swingers’ clubs.

Sheridan’s wife Gail, who has vowed to stand by her husband, was also accused of lying to the jury at the Court of Session in Edinburgh in 2006, but she was acquitted when the Crown dropped the case against her last month.

Sheridan maintained his innocence throughout the trial, claiming he was the victim of a “vendetta” by the police and a “conspiracy” involving the News of the World and colleagues within the Scottish Socialist Party (SSP).

He claimed that 16 former allies were lying as part of a “political civil war” when they told the court that he had admitted at a 2004 meeting to having been to Cupid’s swingers’ club in Manchester.

Presenting his own defence, Sheridan called Andy Coulson, a former News of the World editor and Prime Minister David Cameron’s ex-communications chief, to give evidence.

But the High Court jury ultimately convicted him of five of six allegations in a single charge of perjury against him, relating to his evidence during the civil case.

In doing so, they found him guilty of lying about an affair with SSP member Katrine Trolle in 2005 and a trip to Cupid’s with her, Andrew McFarlane, Gary Clark, and News of the World journalist Anvar Khan on September 27 2002.

Judge Lord Bracadale said: “By pursuing and continuing to pursue a defamation action, you brought the walls of the temple crashing down not only on your own head but also on your family and your political friends and foes.”

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