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Before Christmas, we wrote to the Metropolitan Police asking them to explain or reverse their refusal to investigate the unlawful parties alleged to have taken place at No 10 Downing Street in December 2020.
We’ve now received the Met’s response, which raises more questions than it answers, and strongly suggests their refusal to investigate the alleged No 10 parties was unlawful. And now the Met’s approach is under the spotlight again following yesterday’s revelations of yet another party, this time organised by a top No 10 aide at Downing Street in May 2020. Each new revelation makes the Met’s policy of not investigating these breaches more damaging.
In short, the Met says it concluded that further investigatory work would be required before they could decide whether to bring charges, but rather than attempting to do this, they just closed the case.
Their attempts to justify that decision really don’t make sense. First they say they relied on the Government’s assurances that no rules had been broken. Then they say there would have been no point in interviewing No 10 staff about the parties because they would have refused to answer questions that exposed them to a risk of prosecution. In what other crime would police decline to investigate because the suspected offender assured them no rules had been broken? And those justifications can’t both be true; if no rules were broken, there’s no risk of self-incrimination. We’re intent to get to the bottom of it.
It is not good enough for the Met to delegate their investigative duties to the press. We don’t believe they would make such concessions for anyone else accused of breaking the law.
They seem to be operating a two-tier system, with one rule for those in power and one rule for everyone else. And we think that sets a dangerous precedent with serious implications for public trust.
We’re issuing formal legal proceedings to force the Met to revisit their decision. Those in power broke the rules – repeatedly. They should face the same consequences as everyone else.
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You can read our letter to the Met Police here.