Commons Speaker warns MPs not to name member accused of rape

Commons Speaker warns MPs not to name member accused of rape

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Media captionSpeaker Lindsay Hoyle warns politicians not to name MP arrested for rape

Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle has warned MPs not to “name” the Conservative accused of rape.

The MP in his 50s was arrested on 1 August on suspicion of four separate incidents, involving allegations of sexual offences and assault.

His bail has been extended to the middle of November.

Sir Lindsay told the Commons that the accused had “voluntarily agreed not to attend the House of Commons for the period of the bail”.

Speaking to the House of Commons before the first session of the new parliamentary term, Sir Lindsay said: “I, the House of Commons Commission, and the House Service, take the safety of our staff and the parliamentary community as a whole very seriously.”

He said that all members have access to an independent sexual misconduct advisory service, adding: “They should not hesitate to use it.”

Members of the Houses of Commons and Lords benefit from parliamentary privilege which means they can be legally protected for something they say in Parliament.

However Sir Lindsay warned MPs that “while the investigation is ongoing, I believe that it would be wholly inappropriate for any further reference to be made to this matter in the House, including an attempt to name the member concerned.”

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