Tories will act against MP facing rape allegations if police do, says Zahawi

Conservative chair comments after unnamed MP was reported to the party and police by colleagues

The Conservatives will take action against a Tory MP facing allegations of rape and sexual assault if the police do, the party’s new chairman has said.

Nadhim Zahawi said he had commissioned legal advice on the situation as one of his first acts in the job, after the unnamed MP was reported to the party and police by some of his colleagues.

The alleged victims in the case have not made a complaint to the party or the police but a group of Conservative MPs raised their concerns, first reported by TalkTV and the Sun.

The party has been under pressure to suspend the whip from the MP, but Zahawi said he needed independent legal advice before taking a decision.

He told Sky’s Ridge on Sunday: “These allegations are third-party allegations that have been handed to the police. If the police decide to take action, we will take action as well.”

Scotland Yard said on Friday it had received allegations of “serious sexual assault” and that officers were making inquiries.

Zahawi later told Times Radio he could not say whether the MP would be suspended because he was “waiting for the legal advice that I have asked for”.

He added: “If there is an investigation by the police, then we will obviously take action. But at the moment, I’m waiting for the legal advice on safeguarding on this. It’s right to do this properly. And that’s what I did the moment I walked into the building.”

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Rowena Mason Whitehall editor

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