News broke today that a court judgment had been entered against the Prime Minister, ordering him to pay £535.
The Standard can reveal the claim was brought against him by a woman called Yvonne Hobbs.
Asked for reasons for bringing the case, Ms Hobbs told the online civil money claims court it was for “defamation” and “committed repeated defamation”.
No further information about the substance of the case, which resulted in a judgment last October, has been made publicly available at this stage.
The existence of the case was first revealed by Private Eye magazine, with the Rt Hon. Boris Johnson listed as defendant and his address given as 10 Downing Street. The £535 debt is shown as being “unsatisfied”. Responding to the news, a Number 10 spokeswoman said moves were underway to challenge the judgment.
“An application will be made for an order to set aside the default judgment, to strike out the claim and for a declaration that the claim is totally without merit”, a spokesperson said.
The court ruling came during a key period concerning questions over the Prime Minister’s controversial refurbishment to his flat in No 11.
Downing Street earlier appeared unaware of the county court matter, but insisted it is “nothing to do with the refurbishment of the Downing Street estate, where all such bills have been duly paid either by the Government or the Prime Minister personally.”
Angela Rayner, Labour’s Deputy Leader, commented: “This is not about Boris Johnson’s personal finances, the record speaks for itself that he has already broken the rules on declaring his financial interests, and he is already under investigation regarding potentially illegal wrongdoing.
“The issue of debt when it comes to the Prime Minister is whatever debt of gratitude Boris Johnson owes to the Tory donor who paid to renovate his flat, and what this donor or donors were promised or expected in return for their generosity.”
Asked about trust in the Prime Minister to manage the country’s finances if he could not manage his own, his official spokesman told a briefing of journalists: “I think our record on the economy is very clear.”