LiveVicky Pryce trial - day 2

First published in News
Last updated
Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Eastleigh Chief Reporter

This live event has finished


  • Trial of former Eastleigh MP's wife continues
  • Vicky Pryce denies perverting the course of justice
  • She claims she took Chris Huhne's points because of marital coercion.
  • No comments allowed due to legal issues


Another day of dramatic evidence comes to an end here at Southwark Crown Court.

Pryce returns from the witness stand to the dock and the jury have been asked to be ready tomorrow at 10am.


She tells how she met Huhne near Chelsea football ground on the day of an FA Cup tie in early 2011.

"It was a very, very unpleasant meeting.

"I left thinking I feel awful but beginning to think 'did I do something wrong, should I have been going to Eastleigh more, should I have doing other things'. It made me think perhaps it was my fault after all.

"There was no apology for the affair or for the way we were treated."


One of the couple's sons has since changed his surname from Huhne, Pryce reveals.

Asked about how the situation was affecting her, she added: "I was fragile - very depressed. And what happened at the conference made me even more fragile and depressed."


Pryce remembering a newspaper article in which she was described as a "scorned wife" having turned up for a Lib Dem conference in the wake of the affair revelations.

"All I had done was to be married to this person," she told the court, adding that she had merely wanted to be at the event as she is a Liberal Democrat.


Pryce reliving the dramatic moment Huhne told her he had been having an affair.

He revealed the relationship with Carina Trimmingham during half time of a World Cup fixture between Netherlands and Japan, court told.

Pryce said: "I have absolutely nothing against gay people but I knew Carina as a lesbian she had come to the house and been introduced as a lesbian and had a civil partner - a lady.

"I said 'a lesbian?' and I could not take it seriously. Infact, I laughed because it seemed so preposterous."

She told the court: "My son came down and was told the same story and found it equally unbelievable."

Talking of her state of mind after the revelation, she told jurors: "I was in shock and I was grieving because I had lost a husband."


Pryce said she and Huhne celebrated their 25th anniversary with family in a private room in the House of Commons.

She tells jurors that she later realised "he was already having an affair with Miss Trimmingham".

Daily Echo: Carina Trimmingham and Chris Huhne


Describing the moment Huhne urged her to sign for his speeding points, she told jurors: "I felt I had no choice. I was put in an impossible situation where the implications of the image it would mean for my husband if he lost his licence and the inconvenience and the likelihood that he would not be selected as the prospective parliamentary candidate were too great for the family to bear."


Pryce tells jurors of her reaction when she learned she had been given three points on her licence.

"I exploded and probably used one of my Greek swear words.

"I said I'm not doing this, I'm not signing anything - these are not my points."


Pryce relives the moment Huhne urged her to take speeding penalty points on his behalf.

Tells jurors she did not want to, adding he was a "very, very fast driver and very often ignored speed limits and had brought it on himself."

The pair argued for days with Huhne fearing the serious impact losing his licence would have on his career and attempt to be nominated for the Eastleigh seat, Pryce tells the court.


Pryce reveals in court how she became accidentally pregnant in 1990.

She explained how Huhne "absolutely resisted it saying it would be bad timing, bad financially and bad for his career.

Pryce cried as she revealed she had had an abortion. "I have regretted it ever since," she told the court.


Pryce describing how Huhne's interest turned to becoming a candidate for the Eastleigh Parliamentary seat.

"It was an area he knew well but it's meant that he would have to work very, very hard to convince people he was the right person for it," Pryce told the court.

"It certainly involved (Huhne) being in the constituency a lot of the time or being in the area to get people to accept him as a serious candidate and to chose him.

"It meant that every moment he was in the UK rather than in Brussels or Strasbourg he was spending in Eastleigh and looking to buy a house which he did so as to become as local as possible."


 Pryce tells jurors that at the time "I cared for him a lot, I was very much in love."


Pryce says that when Huhne was an MEP, she had to "rethink my entire life".

She describes Huhne at this stage as being "very driven, very ambitious."

At the time, she told the court, the pair "hardly saw each other".


Vicky Pryce gives her name and explains her job as an economist and business consultant, her educational postings and the fact she received a CBE in 2009.

She said she was born in Athens and educated there in a German school. She tells the court she came to the UK in late 1960s / early 70s and went to the London School of Economics.

After her first marriage ended in 1981, she tells the court, she met Chris Huhne a year later. Huhne was a leader writer at the Guardian at the time.

The pair got engaged in 1983 when the pair were on holiday in Greece and later married having three children together, the court heard.


Jurors are taking their seats ahead of this afternoon's proceedings.


And takes the oath.


Vicky Pryce enters the witness box.


Ms Oakeshott has left the witness box and there is a short break. Prosecution say they may finish their case by lunchtime after what has been another dramatic morning at Southwark Crown Court.


Defence has ended and prosecutor Andrew Edis QC now has chance to question Ms Oakeshott again.


Ms Oakeshott describes Huhne as "ferociously intelligent and ferociously ambitious".

Julian Knowles suggests that Huhne, below, was known at Westminster as being "ruthless".

Daily Echo:


Ms Oakeshott said Pryce was concerned about how the story might impact on her.

''She is a high-flying, professional woman who is clever enough to always have in mind her own reputation, and my hope was to get her to talk openly about what had happened, no ducking or diving.''


Ms Oakeshott tells court that during lunch meeting, Pryce "leant over to me and said something like 'I took his points'."


She told jurors that at first she did not properly understand what Pryce had said to her.


Ms Oakeshott describing Pryce's state when the pair met at 2010 Lib Dem conference.

Pryce wanted to "hold her head up high and keep going" by attending the Lib Dem conference in 2010 following traumatic break up with husband, Ms Oakeshott tells jurors.


Circumstances of Huhne and Pryce marriage break-up were "very bitter", Ms Oakeshott tells court.


Ms Oakeshott now being cross examined by Pryce's barrister Julian Knowles QC.


A follow up story did appear, the court heard, but in another newspaper.


Ms Oakeshott told the court she was under pressure to run a follow up to her story.

The identity of the person who was alleged to have taken speeding points on Huhne's behalf was still not in the public domain at this stage.


Ms Oakeshott being asked about the breaking of the story that Chris Huhne had asked somebody to take speeding points on his behalf.


Ms Oakeshott said she was always "strongly of the opinion" that Pryce was telling the truth.


Pryce told Ms Oakeshott that Huhne filled out the speeding form nominating her as the driver "without any consultation whatsoever".

It put Pryce in an "extremely difficult position and she was obviously extremely upset by it", Ms Oakeshott tells jurors.


Ms Oakeshott said it was Pryce's idea to tape a conversation between her and her former husband.


Ms Oakeshott said Pryce was "shocked" to receive letter in 2003 saying she had been nominated as the driver of Huhne's car, the vehicle that had been caught speeding.


Ms Oakeshott tells court Pryce was in a "fragile state" over break up of marriage with Huhne.

The journalist added: "I was not in any way pushing her to do it."


Ms Oakeshott: "I am very clear that (Pryce) wanted to expose what she saw as (Chris Huhne's) true character."

She described Pryce as a "high-flying professional woman".


At the time, Pryce, pictured below with Chris Huhne, was "considering writing a book" about the break down of her marriage with  Huhne, the court heard.

Daily Echo:


The court hears how Pryce revealed how she took speeding points for her husband when she and Ms Oakeshott met for lunch.


Ms Oakeshott being asked about emails between the pair in March 2011.


Pryce moves seats in the dock so she can get a better view of the witness.

Ms Oakeshott and prosecutor Andrew Edis QC asked by judge to keep their voices up.


The pair met when a distant relative of Ms Oakeshott introduced them to one another.


She had a "chance" meeting with Vicky Pryce at a Lib Dem party conference in Liverpool in 2010.


The Sunday Times journalist reads out the oath and confirms her job at the newspaper.


Court assembled, jury are being seated and the second day of the trial is about to get underway.

Vicky Pryce, wearing a black jacket and holding a large white folder, is sitting in front of me in the dock.

Prosecution call Isabel Oakeshott.


If you would like to recap what happened during the first day of the trial, you can do so by taking a look at our live blog of the proceedings.


Good morning from Southwark Crown Court and interest in this trial clearly has not diminished as it moves in to its second day. Photographers lined up outside and a queue or reporters already waiting to enter court 3.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree