A French state prosecutor yesterday launched a criminal investigation into the "Nazi stag night" attended by the Tory MP, Aidan Burley, in December.
Patrick Quincy, prosecutor at Albertville in the French Alps, said he was starting an investigation against "X" – or persons unknown – for "apologising for war crimes" and "wearing the uniform of an organisation guilty of crimes against humanity".
French police will now seek to question 10 British men, including Mr Burley, who attended a stag night at a restaurant in Val Thorens on 3 December. A video posted on the internet showed some of the men – but not Mr Burley – wearing spoof Nazi uniforms, giving Hitler salutes and toasting the "ideology and ideas of the Third Reich".
There were calls yesterday for Prime Minister David Cameron to withdraw the Conservative whip from the Cannock Chase MP.
The French investigators must now decide whether to start formal legal proceedings against some or all of the men shown in the video. Under French law, they face possible criminal charges.
Mr Burley has apologised for his presence at the meeting. He said that he left the room when the Nazi tributes began. The French pressure group, SOS Anti-Semitism, which brought a formal complaint last month, said Mr Burley's behaviour was "illegal, irresponsible and aggravated by his status as a political representative".
The restaurant has also brought a legal complaint against the men, saying its staff had asked the British visitors to remove their Nazi uniforms.Reuse content