Rochdale MP Simon Danczuk has apologised after allegations that he exchanged sexually explicit text messages with a 17-year old.
Mr Danczuk, who is 49, sent the messages to 17-year-old Sophena Houlihan after she asked him for a job in his MPs’ office, according to a report in The Sun newspaper.
As his suspension from the Labour party pending an internal investigation was announced, Mr Danczuk released a statement saying he apologised “unreservedly” for his actions.
“Today's Sun story, while not entirely accurate, refers to an extremely low point in my life,” he said in a series of posts on Twitter.
“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.”
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 attempted to contact Mr Danczuk for additional comment but has not yet received a response.