Disgraced ex-minister Chris Huhne sparked outrage today when he compared failings in the legal profession with those at Stafford Hospital.
The former Lib Dem MP and energy secretary was jailed last year for perverting the course of justice after getting his ex-wife Vicky Pryce to take his speeding points.
Constance Briscoe, a judge and friend of his wife, was convicted last week of three counts of intending to pervert the course of justice relating to the probe into Huhne.
He blames Briscoe for the end of his career and his jailing because she had been in contact with the press about the speeding points story. She was jailed for lying to police investigating the allegations.
He said Briscoe was widely described in the legal profession as ‘mad, bad and dangerous’ but no-one spoke out.
“There is a touch here of the Stafford Hospital and Bristol Royal Infirmary where the doctors closed ranks and did not blow the whistle on one of their own,” Mr Huhne added.
But Stafford Hospital campaigner Cheryl Porter today described Mr Huhne’s remarks as ‘ludicrous’ .
“For Chris Huhne to come along and compare our situation to his own, is ludicrous and absurd. It is ridiculous, outrageous and uncalled for. The people of Stafford and surrounding areas are asking how long can this go on for? They are tired of being labelled.”
The Huhne comments, in a column for The Guardian, have been widely ridiculed.
NHS whistleblower Gary Walker, who lifted the lid on a separate hospital scandal, said: “To compare what he went through with Mid Staffs is misplaced and deeply offensive.
“What happened to him is nothing to do with patients suffering and dying.”
Huhne faces a legal hearing today in which he is trying to have his £110,000 bill for costs in the case reduced to £20,000 on the basis that Briscoe’s evidence unfairly extended the proceedings.