Police won't investigate Gary Verity's expenses after £40,000 repaid

Gary Verity left Welcome to Yorkshire last month.
Gary Verity left Welcome to Yorkshire last month.
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West Yorkshire Police will not launch a criminal investigation into expenses claims made by ex-Welcome to Yorkshire chief executive Sir Gary Verity.

The force has met with representatives of Welcome to Yorkshire following Verity's resignation on health grounds as the tourism agency's boss last month and the subsequent ordering of two independent inquiries by the company's board following allegations about his expense claims and his behaviour towards staff.

Verity is reported to have paid back around £40,000 to Welcome to Yorkshire after making "errors of judgement" with his expenses. The agency has not been willing to comment on the accuracy of the figure.

West Yorkshire Police said the full findings of the independent review would be shared with the force and if evidence of criminal behaviour is uncovered at any time, it will be informed immediately.

The terms of reference for the independent inquiries are yet to be set and no-one has been appointed to lead them, although Welcome to Yorkshire expects to make an announcement this week.

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said: "West Yorkshire Police can confirm that they have met with representatives of Welcome to Yorkshire and are aware of the allegations made against its former Chief Executive.

"An independent investigation, including a forensic audit of the company’s accounts, is being commissioned by Welcome to Yorkshire.

"It has been agreed that the full findings of this independent review will be shared with West Yorkshire Police and if at any time evidence is identified of criminal offences this will be brought to the immediate attention of West Yorkshire Police."

Last week, Ron McMillan, chairman of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: "The parameters of the two independent investigations are close to being confirmed and we expect to have appointed the parties who will carry these investigations out within the next week.”

Welcome to Yorkshire, which is a private company but receives around half of its £4m annual income from the public sector, was criticised last week by a group of local council bosses for delays in starting the inquiries.