Housing Activists Seize Mr and Mrs Expenses MP Home ...

Mark mark at tlio.org.uk
Sat Jun 27 15:46:22 BST 2009

Ref: http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2009/06/433257.html

A group of housing activists have entered and occupied the house of Anne
and Alan Keene. Both Labour MPs they were known as “Mr and Mrs Expenses”
two years before the MP spending scandal broke; Mrs Keen, a health
minister recently admitted making an expense claim for private hospital
treatment for a member of her staff. At the centre of their scandal was
their double mortgage claim, where they illegally used Parliamentary
expenses to pay interest on the mortgages of both their homes – one of
which has now been occupied by outraged locals along with activists from
all backgrounds and nationalities.

It was revealed several days ago that they faced having their Hounslow
constituency home repossessed by the council after leaving it empty for
over a year. The £385,000 three-bedroom terrace was being renovated whilst
they stayed in their central home London near Parliament which they billed
the public £137,679 for. After an alleged falling out with the builders
the house was left empty, but at a local residents meeting a member of the
public alerted activists to the location of the house, and 2 days ago it
was occupied.

Speaking by phone one of the occupants explained why they had taken the
building and what they wanted to happen.

“We want to get back something that has been taken from us in the expenses
scandal. Everyone pays taxes, either directly or through VAT on their
shopping - we’ve all been taken from. There are 10,000 people on the
housing waiting list in Hounslow alone – and people like the Keens are
spending our money on keeping houses empty.”

“Everyone who is needs housing should occupy empty buildings, but as Anne
Keene voted in favour of the war in Iraq, displacing and killing millions
of people, we demand she gets in touch with refugee centres to make
reparations. In the meantime, the house will hopefully become a refugee
centre and home to some of the people she made homeless through poverty
and war.”

The group are asking for solidarity. Donations of food and water, bedding,
hinges and screws are to be taken to:

38 Brook Rd South,

The group can be contacted on 07549160296

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