A Conservative MP who was arrested on suspicion of rape and sexual assault has been released on bail. Liz Truss, the Home Secretary, told Sky News she was ‘very, very concerned’ as she labelledthe accusations ‘appalling’.
The politician in his fifties, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was arrested yesterday over alleged offences in London between 2002 and 2009. These include rape, indecent assault, sexual assault, the abuse of a position of trust and misconduct in public office. He has not had the Tory whip withdrawn — which means he can still vote on legislation — and have not been banned from Parliament. ‘My understanding is this individual is not going into Parliament,’ Truss told the Today programme.
He has been released on bail pending further inquiries from the Metropolitan Police. Scotland Yard has been investigating since a complaint in January 2020.
Details of the MP’s arrest emerged during what Boris Johnson’s government had hoped would be ‘crime week’, with announcements on toughening up policing. The PM told his cabinet on Tuesday morning: ‘Crime, crime, crime is what we want to focus on.’
Allegations of abuse in the heart of government have seen the Palace of Westminster nicknamed 'Pestminster'. There are currently complaints of sexual harassment against no fewer than 56 MPs, including three Cabinet ministers and two shadow Cabinet ministers. A small number are allegations of serious misconduct, including one where an MP allegedly tried to bribe an aide for sex.