Voyeuristic ex-DUP adviser's defence cost public purse £5,673

The trial of a former DUP adviser who was convicted of voyeurism after he placed a hidden camera in a constituency office toilet cost the public purse £5,673 in legal aid payments.

Monday, 30th May 2016, 1:55 pm
Updated Monday, 30th May 2016, 2:58 pm
David McConaghie began a three-month jail sentence in December

David McConaghie, a former senior adviser to Upper Bann MP David Simpson (who alerted police to what had been discovered and testified against his former employee in court), was eight months ago convicted of voyeurism.

After a failed appeal by the one-time prominent member of the Independent Orange Order and the Caleb Foundation, McConaghie began a three-month jail sentence in December.

At the time, the judge told McConaghie: “The court expresses its revulsion toward your behaviour. You have shown no remorse.”

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A Freedom of Information request submitted by a News Letter reader reveals that the defence case cost taxpayers £5,673.

Proceedings in the magistrates’ court involved a solicitor whose fee was £2,349, and a barrister, whose fee was £1,451.

The Courts Service said that the payments were “standard fees”.

The case was then appealed to the county court, where a solicitor was paid £1,354 and a barrister was paid £519.