Tory chairman Grant Shapps could be facing a truly existential threat to his political career — with the emergence of a recording in which he completely contradicts his repeated denials about working as an ‘internet marketer’ after entering parliament in 2005.
In a podcast with ‘Michael Green’ obtained by The Guardian, Shapps states that the recording was made “in the Summer of 2006” — more than a year after he claimed to have stopped such activities:
The Tory spin that Shapps simply misspoke “during the cut and thrust of an interview” doesn’t pass muster. As Scrapbook revealed last November, Shapps actually used his lawyers to bully one of his own constituents into issuing an apology after they called him a liar in relation to the ‘Michael Green’ pseudonym. The statement references the use of the Green name “prior to his entering parliament”:
If lying in media interviews and using the threat of legal action to force a constituent to issue a misleading statement is serious — one wonders what exactly Shapps told the police about his work for his family company, whose dodgy Google-manipulating software was subject to an investigation which concluded its sale may have constituted “an offence of fraud”.
Shapps had stood down as a director of How To Corp Ltd in July 2008, passing his shareholding in the company to his wife Belinda. This is two years before the Traffic Paymaster software was made available for sale in 2010 and three years before the domain trafficpaymaster.com was registered by ‘Michael Green’.
So did Shapps tell the police — either in an interview or via his lawyers — that he had no connection with the software being investigated because he stopped working for the company when he became an MP?