The 17-year-old girl who reportedly received sexually explicit messages from Labour MP Simon Danczuk has today spoken of her distress, saying she was only a year older than the Rochdale grooming victims when the allegd messages were exchanged.
Speaking to The Sun, Sophena Houlihan said: “It is not professional at all. He should know better. He’s got a bad reputation from it all. That is down to him.
“If I was a year younger then I would have been the same age as some of the Rochdale grooming victims he tried to help.”
Ms Houlihan says she contacted Mr Danczuk, 49, to ask for work in his constituency office this summer. She says she was subsequently bombarded with a series of messages by the Rochdale MP who described himself as “horny” and spoke of wanting to “spank” the teenager.
During his time in parliament, Mr Danczuk has worked to out his predecessor Sir Cyril Smith as a paedophile. He is well known for campaigning against child abuse in Rochdale and was last year named campaigning MP of the year for his efforts.
He has now been suspended by the Labour party in light of his communications with Ms Houlihan.
Yesterday, Mr Danczuk tweeted an unreserved apology for his behaviour. He wrote: “My behaviour was inappropriate and I apologise unreservedly to everyone I’ve let down. I was stupid and there’s no fool like an old fool.”
He added in a subsequent tweet: “I’m more saddened that this episode could overshadow the important work we’re doing to help Rochdale and that's where my focus lies.”