Conservative MP ‘arrested on suspicion of raping woman’

Former parliamentary employee reportedly accuses ex-minister of sexual assault and coercive control

Police said the offences are alleged to have taken place in Westminster, Hackney and Lambeth
Police said the offences are alleged to have taken place in Westminster, Hackney and Lambeth

A Conservative MP has reportedly been arrested on suspicion of raping a former parliamentary employee.

The ex-minister was taken into custody early on Saturday after a woman in her 20s accused him of rape, sexual assault, and coercive control, according to The Sunday Times.

The abuse is alleged to have taken place last year and led to the woman going to hospital.

The MP was taken for questioning at an east London police station and has since been released on bail until mid-August’

Scotland Yard confirmed it had launched an investigation.

A spokesperson said: “On Friday, 31 July, the Metropolitan Police Service received allegations relating to four separate incidents involving allegations of sexual offences and assault.

“These offences are alleged to have occurred at addresses in Westminster, Lambeth and Hackney between July 2019 and January 2020.

“The Met has launched an investigation into the allegations.

“A man in his 50s was arrested on Saturday, 1 August on suspicion of rape. He has been released on bail to return on a date in mid-August.”

The allegations were reportedly previously raised with Tory Chief Whip Mark Spencer, and the complainant also spoke to him, but no action was taken.

According to the PA news agency, Mr Spencer advised the woman to make a formal complaint to the authorities who would be able to investigate the claims.

A spokesman for Mr Spencer said: “The Chief Whip takes all allegations of harassment and abuse extremely seriously and has strongly encouraged anybody who has approached him to contact the appropriate authorities, including Parliament’s Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme, which can formally carry out independent and confidential investigations.”

A Conservative Party spokesman said: “We take all allegations of this nature extremely seriously. As this matter is now in the hands of the police it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

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