Charlie Elphicke trial: Ex-MP guilty of sexual assaults

Charlie Elphicke trial: Ex-MP guilty of sexual assaults”

Former Conservative MP Charlie Elphicke has been found guilty of three counts of sexual assault - with the judge warning he faces the "very real possibility" of jail time.

A parliamentary worker in her early 20s, who can not be identified, said Elphicke tried to kiss her and groped her after sharing a drink in Westminster in 2016, and ran his hand up her thigh the next month. "It ends my 25-year marriage to the only man I have ever loved".

The woman said Elphicke asked her about bondage and sex, then kissed her and groped her breast before chasing her around his home chanting "I'm a naughty Tory".

Elphicke cried during evidence and hung his head when the guilty verdict was read.

Natalie supported her husband during court proceedings. He also left in a taxi without making any comment.

His former wife, Natalie Elphicke, posted on Twitter: "Today's verdict is one that brings profound sorrow".

The victim - who can not be named for legal reasons - said she found Elphicke "physically repulsive" but had stayed silent about the attack to protect his young family. "It was like a disgusting, slobbery mess".

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She told jurors that she had rejected his advances and that Elphicke said he had "not been happy for years" in his marriage.

The father-of-two said he wanted an affair with the parliamentary worker, who he was "besotted" with, but denied sexually assaulting her and said he had not touched her inappropriately.

Natalie Dawson, specialist prosecutor for the Crown Prosecuction Service, said in a statement: "Charles Elphicke abused his power and influence over these women to make unwanted and forceful sexual advances towards them".

Jurors heard that Elphicke told police he was accompanied by former attorney general Dominic Grieve for a second meeting with Mrs Milton, in which Mr Grieve apparently "castigated" the whips for the way their investigation into Elphicke was conducted.

Charlie Elphicke was one of two Tories who had the whip restored in 2018, while facing claims of inappropriate sexual behaviour, by the then Prime Minister Theresa May ahead of a vote of no confidence.

Detective Sergeant Michael McInerney of the Met's Complex Case team, said: "These were alarming, distressing incidents for both women and I would like to acknowledge their courage in reporting the incidents and co-operating with the police investigation".

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