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Ex-Welsh minister Carl Sargeant found dead four days after being sacked over 'shocking and distressing' allegations

Mr Sargeant had previously said he hoped to clear his name following as-of-yet unpublished claims about his conduct

Joe Watts
Political Editor
Tuesday 07 November 2017 14:07 GMT
Carl Sargeant has been found dead four days after he lost his Welsh cabinet job amid allegations
Carl Sargeant has been found dead four days after he lost his Welsh cabinet job amid allegations (PA)

Former Welsh government minister Carl Sargeant has been found dead days after being sacked amid “shocking and distressing” allegations about his personal conduct, a family spokesman said.

Mr Sargeant is understood to have taken his own life, leading his family to say on Tuesday that they are “devastated beyond words” at the loss of “the glue that bound us together”.

Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn said the death was “terrible”, while Deputy Leader Tom Watson said it is a “tragedy beyond words”.

Last week Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones said Mr Sargeant had been “removed” from the cabinet, while the Labour cabinet minister himself said he wanted an independent investigation “to allow me to clear my name” – though exact details of the allegations were never made public.

A statement from his family read: “Carl was a much loved husband, father and friend. He wasn’t simply a part of our family. He was the glue that bound us together. He was the heart of our family. We loved him so very much.

“He was the most kind and caring husband, father, son and friend. We are devastated beyond words, and we know our grief will be shared by all those who knew and loved him.

“We are in shock and grief. We ask that our privacy is respected at this time.”

A spokeswoman for North Wales Police confirmed the force is investigating an incident “at an address in Connah’s Quay” but said there are no further details available, and that an update would come in due course.

Mr Corbyn described the news as “terrible and deeply shocking”, while Mr Watons added: “I campaigned with Carl for many years. He was a powerful voice for working people and Wales.

“He put community at the heart of his politics and was respected by his constituents for it. My love and prayers are with Carl’s family today. This is a tragedy beyond words.”

The Alyn and Deeside Welsh Assembly member was suspended from party membership and removed from his cabinet role in Cardiff Bay on 3 November.

Carwyn Jones asked Mr Sargeant to step aside four days ago when allegations came to light (Getty)

At the time Mr Sargeant said in a statement: “I met with the First Minister today and he informed me allegations had been made about my personal conduct, which was shocking and distressing to me.

“The details of the allegations have yet to be disclosed to me.”

He said that given the nature of the allegations he agreed with the First Minister that it was right he “stands aside” from cabinet. He added: “I look forward to returning to Government once my name has been cleared.”

Mr Sargeant was first elected to the Welsh assembly in 2003. In December 2009 he was made minister for social justice and local government in Jones’s first cabinet. He became cabinet secretary for communities and children in May last year.

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