Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Fifth Report

Annex i27

Letter to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards from Ms Maria Fernandes

I refer to your letter of 11th July 2001 and the telephone calls to my office. My secretary contacted your office to advise that I was abroad.

As you have accepted, you did not inform me that I was being taped nor was I aware of it until the end of the meeting as two large bottles of water were in front of the microphone. I am sure you will agree that it is important that third parties seeking to assist the Parliamentary Commissioner should have their basic rights observed.

I am happy for a note to be prepared of the meeting as is stated in your procedure (paragraph 12 Ninth Report) and if you send it to me I will return it as soon as possible. But as I informed you some of these matters are the subject of legal proceedings.

Mr Pathan has informed me that he is looking into the matters you raised concerning the company.

As to questions about my law firm, I shall be taking legal professional advice on the points you have put and respond as soon as I have done this. As you are aware my practice is completely independent of Mr Vaz.

For your information I shall be returning to London at the end of August.

6 August 2001

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