Legal move against PM

Johnson agrees to ask for Brexit delay after latest court action

Joanna Cherry

Joanna Cherry: ‘gulf of truth’ (pic: Terry Murden)

Boris Johnson has agreed to send a letter to the EU asking for a Brexit delay if no deal is agreed by 19 October.

His willingness to comply with the Benn Act emerged in papers submitted to the Court of Session in Scotland as a new action was raised that could see him jailed if he defied the law.

QC for the campaigners, led by the SNP’s Joanna Cherry, said the submission contradicted statements by the prime minister last week in Parliament.

Downing Street was maintaining its line that the UK would still be leaving the EU on 31 October.

The legal action, which is being led by businessman Vince Dale along with Jolyon Maugham QC, will ask Scotland’s highest civil court to mandate Mr Johnson to seek an extension to avoid crashing out of the EU without a deal.

Under the cross-party Benn Act, the UK government must ask for a further extension to Article 50 from the EU by 19 October, unless the House of Commons has concluded a deal with the EU or expressly voted for a no deal exit.

Ms Cherry wants the judges to test the Prime Minister’s threats to defy the law and refuse to seek an extension to avoid a catastrophic no deal Brexit.

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