Conservative MP Conor Burns was the topic of a sexual harassment grievance 5 years earlier than he was sacked as a minister for alleged inappropriate behaviour on the Tory Get together Convention, Channel 4 Information can reveal.
The sexual harassment declare was made in opposition to the Bournemouth West MP in 2017 and alleged incidents stated to have taken place in 2013.
Mr Burns vigorously denies the allegations saying that they’re “with out advantage” and had been withdrawn “nearly instantly” earlier than an investigation even came about. He informed us the grievance was by no means put to him and that it was made by a “dangerous religion actor motivated by malice”.
The grievance is unrelated to the alleged incident at a bar in Birmingham’s Hyatt Resort on the convention earlier this month, that led to him being sacked as Minister for Commerce Coverage by Prime Minister Liz Truss. Downing Road insisted the Prime Minister was not made conscious of the 2017 sexual harassment declare when she appointed Mr Burns as a Minister for Commerce on 7 September.
Previous to his appointment Mr Burns was vetted by the Cupboard Workplace’s Propriety and Ethics Crew. The Cupboard Workplace informed Channel 4 Information it additionally had not identified concerning the earlier 2017 grievance.
The grievance in opposition to Mr Burns in 2017 involved allegations of inappropriate conduct in opposition to one particular person in 2013. The grievance was referred to the Conservative Get together from the Chief Whip’s Workplace.
Channel 4 Information understands the 2017 grievance resulted within the graduation of a course of beneath the principles of the Conservative Get together Code of Conduct.
The Conservative Get together stated the grievance was withdrawn shortly after it was made. They declined to supply any additional particulars concerning the course of.
Channel 4 Information understands the allegations had been withdrawn as a result of a insecurity within the complaints course of. The occasion insisted it had “due regard for due course of”.
When Channel 4 Information requested the occasion if that they had obtained a grievance about Mr Burns in 2017 it initially responded saying it had not obtained one.
However after Channel 4 Information produced additional proof the occasion stated, whereas an preliminary examine didn’t point out a grievance had been made, they wished to make clear and make sure a grievance in opposition to the MP had been made.
A Conservative Get together spokesperson informed Channel 4 Information: “As there may be at the moment an energetic investigation involving Mr. Burns, we’re unable to remark additional.”
Conor Burns was fired final Friday, after an allegation of “critical misconduct” on the bar on the Hyatt Regency Resort through the Conservative Get together Convention. He denies the declare.
Mr Burns misplaced his job as Commerce Coverage Minister and has had the whip withdrawn whereas a proper investigation takes place. He has protested his innocence in a collection of tweets and in an interview with Channel 4 Information earlier this week.
He stated beforehand: “I’ve been overwhelmed by the assist from my colleagues, who’ve discovered it past unusual that the whip was withdrawn, and I used to be sacked from ministerial workplace, with out being given the chance to be informed what the allegation was, or how I might interact within the course of to reply to it.
“I used to reside in a rustic the place the rule of legislation, pure justice and a course of came about, and the place folks had been presumed harmless till confirmed in any other case.”
In a letter to Channel 4 Information, he stated the allegations had been by no means put to him and there was by no means an investigation.
Each of the claims, that are unrelated, have not been confirmed.