Court Quashes Bid to Prosecute Boris Johnson Over EU Claim

Boris Johnson was Britain’s foreign secretary when he was photographed here, talking to a British armed forces serviceman based in Orzysz, Poland, during a June 21, 2018, ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski, File)

LONDON (AP) — Britain’s High Court has quashed a bid to prosecute Conservative lawmaker Boris Johnson for allegedly lying during the country’s 2016 European Union membership referendum.

Two judges on Friday threw out a lower court’s ruling that Johnson should be summoned to answer questions about Brexit campaigners’ claim that Britain pays $446 million a week to the EU. The net figure Britain sends is about half that.

Activist Marcus Ball brought a private prosecution against Johnson, who helped lead the “leave” campaign, for misconduct in public office.

Johnson’s lawyers argued the prosecution was politically motivated, and said the 350 million figure “was just a political claim” that voters could accept or reject.

Johnson is currently the favorite to succeed Theresa May, who steps down as Conservative Party leader Friday.

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