Disgraced former Co-operative Bank boss Paul Flowers (pictured above: Reuters) has admitted possessing drugs including cocaine and crystal meth six months after he was exposed by The Mail on Sunday.
The minister, dubbed the Crystal Methodist, appeared before magistrates in Leeds today where he pleaded guilty to two counts of possession of class A drugs, cocaine and methamphetamine, and one count of possession of class C drug ketamine. He was fined £400 and ordered to pay £125 costs.
Flowers, 63, stepped down as the Co-op Bank chairman in June after claims of illegal drug use and inappropriate expenses payments. He was also suspended by the Methodist Church and the Labour Party.
The Co-op confirmed last year that it was seeking to recover contractual payments totalling £31,000 made to Flowers amid reports that he was also the subject of an inquiry into ''lavish'' expense claims.
In March, appearing on Newsnight, Flowers accused The Mail on Sunday of publishing “fiction” despite the paper having video evidence showing him purchasing the drugs from a male escort.
The MoS said that Flowers had refused every opportunity to put his version of events to its journalists and criticised the BBC for allowing Flowers to "lie repeatedly" on Newsnight.
Flowers arrived at court today before the doors had been unlocked, leaving him to stand on the street for five minutes surrounded by photographers and TV cameras.
He said: "Don't ask me any questions because I won't give any answers."
He described the mass of reporters and photographers as "vultures" as he stood and endured a barrage of flash photography, eventually saying: "Do you have enough now?"
Court staff opened the doors at 9am and let the pinstripe-suited clergyman into the building.