Jailed former minister Huhne released from prison

LONDON Mon May 13, 2013 1:26pm BST

1 of 5. Former British cabinet minister Chris Huhne arrives back at his home, after being released from prison, in London May 13, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Olivia Harris

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LONDON (Reuters) - Former energy minister Chris Huhne and his ex-wife Vicky Pryce were released early from prison on Monday, just two months after being jailed for lying to police about a speeding offence.

Sentenced in March to eight months behind bars each, the pair were found guilty of perverting the course of justice by falsely telling police that Pryce rather than Huhne was at the wheel of a vehicle caught speeding on a motorway in 2003.

Released from separate prisons, Huhne - once tipped as a possible successor to Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg - and Pryce served just 62 days of their sentences.

Huhne was released from Leyhill Prison, in Gloucestershire, while Pryce was freed from East Sutton Park prison in Kent.

The revelations first came to light in 2011 after Pryce took revenge against her ex-husband who left her for another woman soon after becoming a cabinet minister.

Telling two British newspapers about the deception to spare Huhne from taking speeding points and losing his licence, she blew open what had been a family secret for years.

Newspaper reports said the pair will now wear electronic tags to monitor their movements in a further ignominy for a man who came just a few hundred votes behind the now Deputy Prime Minister Clegg in the Liberal Democrat 2007 leadership contest.

In sentencing, Judge Sweeney told Huhne in March that he had been continually dishonest over the incident that ultimately toppled his political career.

"Despite your high office, Mr Huhne, you tried to lie your way out of trouble by claiming you were innocent, by repeating that lie again and again," he said.

(Reporting By Costas Pitas; editing by Steve Addison)

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