Conservative MP Crispin Blunt has been arrested on suspicion of rape and possessing controlled substances, it was revealed today, but claims the arrest was ‘unnecessary’ and says he is ‘confident’ he will not be charged.
Blunt took to social media to confirm he was the ‘prominent Tory MP’ who had been interviewed by police on Thursday night, stating he has been questioned by officers on two occasions.
The 63-year-old former minister claimed his arrest over the serious allegations was ‘unnecessary’ because he is ‘co-operating’ with police.
It followed reports published on Thursday that an unnamed ‘prominent’ Conservative MP had been arrested in Horley.
After Blunt identified himself as the man at the centre of the allegations, it was reported he has had the Tory whip suspended and been asked to stay away from Parliament.
Both the Conservative Party and Downing Street declined to comment on the allegations.
Writing on X, formerly Twitter, the MP for Reigate said: ‘It has been reported that an MP was arrested yesterday in connection with an allegation of rape. I am confirming that MP was me.
Crispin Blunt took to social media on Thursday to identify himself as the MP in question
‘The fact of the arrest requires a formal notification of the Speaker and then the Chief Whip.
‘I have now been interviewed twice in connection with this incident, the first time three weeks ago, when I initially reported my concern over extortion.
‘The second time was earlier this morning under caution following arrest. The arrest was unnecessary as I remain ready to cooperate fully with the investigation that I am confident will end without charge.
‘I do not intend to say anything further on this matter until the police have completed their inquiries.’
Blunt served in the Ministry of Justice as the minister responsible for prisons and probation between 2010 and 2012. He also chaired the Foreign Affairs Committee from 2015.
He announced in May 2022 that he would be standing down at the next election.
The police were unable to say if the controlled substances were drugs, as tests are being carried out.
The Tory party has declined to comment on his arrest, which is the latest blow to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as he faces an uphill battle ahead of next year’s expected election.
But chief whip Simon Hart MP has reportedly told Blunt to stay away from Parliament while an investigation is ongoing.
After Blunt identified himself as the man at the centre of the allegations, it was reported he has had the Tory whip suspended and has been asked to stay away from Parliament
Mr Blunt is the latest in a string of sitting MPs to be arrested on allegations of sexual offences.
The father-of-two, who separated from his wife in 2010 to come to terms with his sexuality after revealing he is gay, has been an MP since 1997.
Mike Clancy, general secretary of the Prospect union, which represents staff in Parliament, said: ‘How many more cases like this will it take for action to be taken to protect staff and visitors on the parliamentary estate?
‘The Leader of the House must bring forward a vote on excluding MPs under investigation for violent and sexual offences from accessing the parliamentary estate as soon as Parliament returns.’
A Surrey police spokesman said: ‘We can confirm a man was arrested yesterday morning (25 October) on suspicion of rape and possession of controlled substances.
‘He has been released on conditional police bail pending further enquiries.’
Former chief whip Chris Pincher was forced out of office last week over claims he groped two men at a Tory private members club.
And yesterday, Peter Bone – a former minister – was suspended from the Commons for six weeks for bullying and sexual misconduct against a member of staff.
Another unnamed Conservative MP is also on bail over sexual assault allegations, which he denies.
In a separate case, a Tory MP was arrested on suspicion of rape in 2020. He was never identified and police took no further action after an investigation.
Mr Sunak’s party is currently behind in the polls, and suffered two shattering blows last week when Labour seized true-blue strongholds Mid Beds and Tamworth, overturning massive majorities.
Experts said the results put Sir Keir Starmer firmly on track for No10 next year. Although by-elections never translate directly, if replicated at a general election the 20-plus percentage point swings seen would see the Conservatives reduced to a rump of just 20 seats.
The public is also seemingly in favour of an election sooner rather than later, according to More in Common research.
Just 12 per cent believe the ballot should happen at the last possible date in January 2025, with 32 per cent backing next May.