A former Conservative minister has been arrested after a woman accused him of rape, sexual assault and coercive control, it was reported last night.
The Metropolitan police confirmed they had launched an investigation into four alleged incidents between July 2019 and January 2020 at different locations in London. They said “a man in his 50s” was taken into custody early yesterday and was still in a police station in east London last night.
He faces allegations from a woman who reportedly worked on the parliamentary estate that he abused her on several occasions. She alleges that the MP assaulted her, forced her to have sex, and left her so traumatised that she had to go to hospital, according to the claim.
In a statement, Scotland Yard 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.
“A man was arrested on 1 August on suspicion of rape.” The Met said it was not making any statement about the man’s occupation.
The Sunday Times reported that a fellow Conservative MP first raised the woman’s allegation with Mark Spencer, the Tory chief whip, and Jacob Rees-Mogg, the leader of the House of Commons, after speaking to the alleged victim a month ago. The Press Association said that Spencer had advised her to make a formal complaint.
A spokesman for 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.”
The Conservative party said: “We take all allegations of this nature extremely seriously. As this matter is in the hands of the police, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”