Nigel Evans trial: Former deputy speaker denies raping and sexually assaulting man at constituency home

 

The former deputy speaker of the House of Commons on Thursday denied raping and sexually assaulting a young man at his constituency home telling a jury that all contact between them was consensual.

Giving evidence in his trial at Preston Crown Court, Nigel Evans said there had been no indication the 22-year-old was an unwilling participant in the acts in the bedroom of his cottage in Pendleton, Lancashire last year.

He also denied sexually assaulting another man on a sofa at the house in 2009. Mr Evans, 56, described how he and the man laid together holding hands but that he “exploded and said `No” when he tried to touch him for a second time after brushing away his advances.

He said there was no further sexual contact between the men.

Under questioning from his barrister Peter Wright QC, Mr Evans said an allegation that he had “cupped” the genitals of another young man he met in the Strangers Bar of the House of Commons was “as absurd as it sounds”.

He also said he had no recollection of putting his hand down the trousers of two other men whilst out drinking. Mr Evans, who denies all the charges involving seven men against him, told the jury how he had gone public over his sexuality revealing to the Mail on Sunday that he was gay in December 2010.

He said he had “struggled” with the issue for many years but eventually decided to come out following the death of his elderly mother – telling Prime Minister David Cameron of his decision along with his constituency association.

“My mum was in her 80s, there was no right time. I just did not want to upset her. I didn't know how she would take it,” he said.

Mr Wright asked him about his decision to stand as deputy speaker after losing his job in the shadow cabinet in a restructuring of posts under former Tory leader Michael Howard.

“I thought 'Here is an opportunity to be involved in the day-to-day running of Parliament on a much bigger basis'," he said.

Asked about his drinking he admitted he had “probably” been drunk at Parliament and at Conservative party conferences which he said were social as well as political events.

The trial continues.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
tv
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there