Penalty points trial of Huhne and his former wife delayed until next year

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The trial of former Cabinet minister Chris Huhne and his ex-wife over a speeding penalty has been adjourned until January 14 for legal reasons.

The pair are both charged with perverting the course of justice over an allegation that the former Energy Secretary persuaded Vicky Pryce to take his penalty points for a speeding offence almost a decade ago.

Huhne, 58, from Eastleigh, Hants, remains the Lib Dem MP for Eastleigh but stood down from Cabinet to fight the charge.

A trial at Southwark Crown Court, in London, which was due to start this week, has been adjourned until January 14 for legal reasons, the court heard yesterday.

The events that led to the charges date back to March 2003, when Huhne’s car was allegedly caught by a speed camera on the motorway between Stansted Airport in Essex and London.

Accusations of impropriety emerged only in 2010, after the father-of-five admitted an affair with PR adviser Carina Trimingham and ended his 26-year marriage.

It is alleged that between March 12, 2003 and May 21, 2003, Pryce, of Clapham, south London, falsely informed police that she was the driver of the car.

Both defendants are on bail. Perverting the course of justice carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.