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Boris Johnson accuser loses appeal to take ‘£350m claim’ to Supreme Court

Boris JohnsonImage copyright PA Media
Image caption Boris Johnson was a key figure in the 2016 Brexit referendum

A man who took Boris Johnson to court over claims he lied during the 2016 EU referendum has lost his bid to take his case to the Supreme Court.

Marcus Ball accused Mr Johnson of “abusing public trust” by claiming that the NHS could get £350m extra a week after Brexit.

The High Court threw out his case in June – but Mr Ball applied for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court.

On Wednesday, Lady Justice Rafferty also rejected that application.

Mr Johnson’s lawyers have always rejected claims he acted improperly or dishonestly in any way.

Mr Ball can still apply directly to the Supreme Court for permission to appeal.

“This isn’t over, we are not giving up,” he said outside court after Wednesday’s ruling. “We are pursuing it, absolutely.”

The £350m figure was used by the pro-Brexit Vote Leave group during the referendum.

It also appeared on the side of a campaign bus, which urged the UK to “fund our NHS instead”.

The claim was criticised by, among others, the UK’s statistics watchdog.

Image caption Marcus Ball has said he will continue to pursue the case

Mr Ball crowdfunded more than £390,000 for legal fees to fight the case, arguing: “We do not send that amount of money to the EU each week.

“We have evidence that Mr Johnson knew that we don’t.”

He sought to prosecute the Tory MP and ex-Mayor of London on three counts of misconduct in public office.

However, the High Court said last month it was not proved Mr Johnson had been acting in a public office.

Lady Justice Rafferty – one of the the High Court judges who threw the case out in June – made a brief announcement on the decision to block the case from the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

“This application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court is rejected,” she said.

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