Pryce 'shocked' by Huhne news story

Vicky Pryce is on trial at Southwark Crown Court accused of perverting the course of justice

Vicky Pryce is on trial at Southwark Crown Court accused of perverting the course of justice

First published in National News © by

Vicky Pryce was shocked and horrified, and "wanted to turn the clock back", when the story about Chris Huhne getting someone to take his speeding points hit the headlines, she told a court.

The former Cabinet minister's ex-wife said she felt "ashamed and upset" when the story appeared on the front page of the Sunday Times on May 8 2011, and wanted nothing more to do with it.

It later emerged that it was Pryce who had taken the points. Huhne finally admitted lying about the matter this week, but his former wife denies perverting the course of justice, claiming marital coercion.

Pryce, 60, who on Thursday revealed that Huhne once bullied her into having an abortion, told Southwark Crown Court he made her take the points in a "fait accompli" in 2003.

She first revealed the offence to Sunday Times political editor Isabel Oakeshott over a lunch many years later, in March 2011.

Pryce said that the revelation got Ms Oakeshott "excited" as she planned how to run the story in the newspaper. The pair agreed that the claims would be made through an interview with Pryce, and an agreement was put in place in a bid to protect the economist.

But Pryce told the court that she was shocked and horrified to see the story on the front page, and that it included details which could reveal her as the person who took the points.

"I felt actually that I was already being exposed," she said. "I was a bit shocked and horrified and of course started worrying very significantly about the whole process that led to this article. So in many ways I just wanted to turn the clock back and not have anything to do with it."

She added: "I was quite shocked about the way that the information had come out and I was beginning to feel that actually I had been perhaps manipulated in a way and that things had probably been pushed too far."

She told the court she decided not to deal with the Sunday Times again after that.

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