The donation from the former president of formula one’s governing body, the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) , was registered on 28 June and first reported by Guido Fawkes. It is declared in the register of members’ financial interests for Watson.
Watson stated that the funding, which Mosley gave through the Labour party, was “to support my office as deputy leader and shadow Cabinet Office minister”.
It was the second time that Mosley has made a donation to Watson. Last August he donated £12,500 in cash and printing worth £27,554 – a total of almost £40,000 to support Watson’s successful campaign to be elected as Labour’s deputy leader under Jeremy Corbyn.
Mosley became a privacy campaigner after the now defunct News of the World published a story about his sex life in 2008.
The MP for West Bromwich East campaigned for the Metropolitan police to investigate allegations of phone hacking against the News of the World. In a September 2010 letter to Sir Paul Stephenson, the Met’s commissioner, he said the “historic and continued mishandling of this affair is bringing your force, and hence our democracy, into disrepute”.
Rupert Murdoch closed the title in July 2011 in a bid to prevent the political and commercial fallout from the phone-hacking scandal engulfing his media empire.
Author JK Rowling also made a donation of £4,000 to Watson’s campaign for deputy leader last year. It was the first time the Harry Potter creator had given money to an individual politician. According to Watson’s declaration to the register of members’ interests, he received £4,000 from her in May.
Watson has called on Corbyn, his former ally, to stand aside. He told the Labour leader he had lost his authority within the parliamentary party after some 20 members of the shadow cabinet resigned in the wake of the referendum vote to leave the European Union.
This article was written by Chris Johnston, for theguardian.com on Thursday 14th July 2016 00.50 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010