October 9, 2021 10.06 am

Lincoln MP apologises for conduct breaches after dodging family firm ties disclosure

Watchdog found Karl McCartney failed to properly declare links to family firm

An investigation has concluded that Conservative Lincoln MP Karl McCartney has breached the Code of Conduct for Members of Parliament three times after failing to properly declare his ties to a family firm.

Karl McCartney was the subject of a watchdog inquiry after Business Insider uncovered irregularities in the Register of Members’ Financial interests.

The probe by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, Kathryn Stone, found that the Lincoln MP breached the rules in three ways from 2010 to 2017, and again since 2019.

He described a role with “ML Systems Ltd”, which he said was a shortened version of MoonLighting Systems, for which he shares an interest.

Yet McCartney said he was a director of the firm, though Companies House registered him as a company secretary instead.

ML Systems Ltd was incorporated on June 8, 2009 and dissolved on January 21, 2015, and Mr McCartney was found to have had no involvement with the business.

Moonlighting Systems Ltd is a company where the Conservative MP is listed as a shareholder for along with his brother Kevin McCartney.

As well as this, he had used the shortened version of the company name to register a payment of £3,700 on January 11, 2020.

A letter was sent to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, Kathryn Stone, by Chair of the Labour Party Anneliese Dodds, which prompted a probe into Mr McCartney’s actions.

McCartney said he used the shortened version of the company name since he first entered Parliament in 2010, though it was found to be a clear breach, as he had no connection to ML Systems Ltd.

The inquiry found that Karl McCartney had indeed breached paragraph 14 of the Code of Conduct for Members of Parliament. This was a decision he accepted, acknowledged and apologised for, according to the summary findings.

The Commissioner stated that the breach was at “the less serious end of the spectrum” and allowed for the MP to make a corrected entry in the Register of Members Interests in conclusion.

The Lincolnite has contacted Mr McCartney for a comment.

Also read: Lincoln MP deletes fascist group retweet after intense backlash

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