MP alleged to have used public money to settle a legal dispute

A Birmingham MP who was taken to an employment tribunal by a former assistant and girlfriend is alleged to have used public money to settle a dispute.

He was accused him of religious discrimination and the case was settled on the day of the hearing.

Khalid Mahmood is alleged used public money to settle a legal dispute with his Parliamentary assistant.

Ms Cohen signed a non-disclosure agreement as a condition of an out-of-court settlement agreement, which will prevent her from discussing the case against Mr Mahmood personally.

Mr Mahmood's legal costs were covered by the insurance available to all MPs which is funded by taxpayers at part of the Parliamentary expenses system.

The pair are no longer a couple but had continued to work together, although colleagues describe the pair as having a dysfunctional relationship.

Ms Cohen allegedly accused Mr Mahmood of attempting to push her out by employing other people to do her job.

Disagreements between Ms Cohen and Mr Mahmood apparently came to a head after Ms Cohen accused Labour MP Naz Shah of being "anti-Zionist". Ms Shah later confirmed that she had made anti-Semitic statements and apologised to Ms Cohen prior to the settlement agreement being offered.

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