Boris Johnson ordered to apologise for failing to declare £52000 in income

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Britain's former foreign secretary Boris Johnson was ordered by parliament's standards watchdog on Thursday to apologise for failing to declare nearly £53,000 earnings on time.

The former foreign secretary offered a "full and unreserved" apology in a 35-second statement in the House of Commons.

Speaker John Bercow thanked him for his "prompt" response and said that was the end of the matter.

Kathryn Stone, parliamentary commissioner for standards, said the late declarations "suggested a lack of attention to, or regard for, the House's requirements" and the breach was "neither inadvertent or minor" - as Mr Johnson had claimed.

She referred the case to the Committee on Standards to decide on a punishment for Mr Johnson.

The former foreign secretary registered nine payments totalling £52,722 - almost 70% of his MP salary - after the 28-day deadline, the House of Commons' committee on standards found.

"The Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards found that nine payments were registered by Mr Johnson after the required 28-day deadline".

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"In considering the appropriate sanction, it took into account what it considered to be aggravating and mitigating factors, and recommended that Mr Johnson make an apology to the House on a point of order".

But the Committee said there were no grounds for supposing Mr Johnson "intended to deceive the House or the general public about the level of his remuneration", though it criticised his "over-casual attitude" to the rules.

The nine late registrations had a total value of £52,722.80, and were largely royalties or for the sale of rights on books already written, Ms Stone said.

MPs are required to declare payments for any work carried out in addition to their duties as an MP, in the Register of Members' Interests.

"The Commissioner found that Mr Johnson acted in breach of the House's rules on the registration of his financial interests".

Speaking in the Commons on Thursday after the watchdog called on him to apologise, Johnson said numerous delayed payments were "unexpected foreign royalties".

Mr Johnson stood up in the middle of a debate on Brexit to say he was "very sorry" the payments were declared late and that he "fully accepts" the delay breached parliament's rules.

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