Simon Danczuk suspended from Labour party after 'sending sexually explicit texts to teenager'

Labour are investigating the claims

Rochdale MP Simon Danczuk has been suspended from the Labour party after allegations that he exchanged sexually explicit text messages with a teenager.

Mr Danczuk, who is 49, sent the messages to 17-year-old Sophena Houlihan after she asked him for a job, according to a report in The Sun newspaper.

Mr Danczuk has been an outspoken critic of the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn in recent months. 

During the party’s leadership contest he said MPs would be plotting to oust Mr Corbyn “from day one” if he became leader.

A spokesperson for the Labour party said: 

“The General Secretary of the Labour Party has today suspended Simon Danczuk's membership of the Party, pending an investigation into allegations published in the media today.  

A full investigation will now take place under the authority of the National Executive Committee, which will be responsible for determining any further action.”

The Sun reports that in the course of a series of what appear to be flirtatious texts between the two, the MP asked the girl if she wanted “spanking” and explained that he was “horny”.

She also sent him a number of sexually-charged text messages.

Mr Danczuk allegedly asked Ms Houlihan to meet at the Labour party conference and reportedly suggested that she join him on a trip to Spain.

The Sun reports that she turned him down and the pair never met in person. There is no suggestion that Mr Danczuk has broken any law.

Mr Danczuk prominently led a campaign to expose his predecessor as Rochdale MP, Sir Cyril Smith, as a paedophile.

The age of consent is 16 years old in the United Kingdom. 

The Sexual Offences Act 2003 however defines the age of consent as 18 when a person is “in a position of trust” over someone else.

The law defines this as including someone who is regularly involved in training, supervising or being in sole charge of a person under 18.

The Independent has attempted to contact Mr Danczuk for comment but has not yet received a response.

After the initial publication of this story, he tweeted: Today's Sun story, while not entirely accurate, refers to an extremely low point in my life.

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.

I'm more saddened that this episode could overshadow the important work we're doing to help Rochdale & that's where my focus lies.