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UK MP David Warburton suspended amid sexual harassment allegations

BY: bbc.com
UK MP David Warburton suspended amid sexual harassment allegations

Conservative MP David Warburton has been suspended from the parliamentary party pending an investigation into allegations about his conduct.

The claims about Mr Warburton, who sits on the backbenches, are being examined by Parliament's Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme (ICGS).

Conservative sources have told the BBC that three allegations of sexual harassment are being investigated.

Mr Warburton has been MP for Somerton and Frome since 2015.

A spokesperson for the Whips Office said the party whip had been removed while the investigation was ongoing.

The Sunday Times reported that three women have complained about Mr Warburton's conduct.

The newspaper also reported allegations that Mr Warburton had taken cocaine, and that he had failed to declare a £100,000 loan - taken out in 2017, and since repaid - from a Russian businessman.

Mr Warburton hasn't responded to a BBC request to comment on the allegations.

However he did tell the Sunday Telegraph that he had not heard from the ICGS and that he had "enormous amounts of defence".

Asked about the allegations, government minister Grant Shapps said he had no further knowledge other than what the party had said, and what he had read in the newspapers.

"Obviously, any allegations like this need to be taken extremely carefully, but all the facts will need to be brought out as well," he told Sky's Sophy Ridge On Sunday.

Mr Warburton is chair of the all-party parliamentary group on music and has previously been a member of the European scrutiny committee.

He lives near Somerton, in Somerset, with his wife and their two children, his website says.