Tory MP Peter Bone Set To Be Suspended For Bullying And Sexual Misconduct
Peter Bone has been the MP for Wellingborough since 2005 (Alamy)
Conservative MP Peter Bone has been found to have committed "many varied acts of bullying and one act of sexual misconduct” against a staff member, with the Independent Expert Panel (IEP) recommending that he is suspended from the House of Commons for six weeks.
The panel described the incidents as a "serious case of misconduct", which took place between 2012 and 2013.
His suspension would trigger a recall petition under the Recall of MPs Act 2015, therefore triggering another by-election before the next general election, expected in 2024.
The complainant had originally complained to the Conservative Party in 2017, but then complained to the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme (ICGS) in October 2021 and withdrew from the party's complaints process.
"This is a serious case of misconduct," the panel said.
"[Mr Bone] has been found to have committed many varied acts of bullying and one act of sexual misconduct. The bullying involved violence, shouting and swearing, mocking, belittling and humiliating behaviour, and ostracism. It was often in front of others... The respondent specifically targeted the complainant.
"This wilful pattern of bullying also included an unwanted incident of sexual misconduct, when the complainant was trapped in a room with the respondent in a hotel in Madrid, not knowing what was going to happen next.
"This was a deliberate and conscious abuse of power using a sexual mechanism: indecent exposure. It was woven into a pattern of inappropriate behaviour which also included requests for massages of his shoulders and neck and instructions to put hands in laps, including forcibly putting the complainant’s hands in his lap."
Bone denies the incidents took place, posting a public statement in which he said the allegations were "false and untrue".
"As I have maintained throughout these proceedings, none of the misconduct allegations against me ever took place. They are false and untrue claims. They are without foundation," he said.
He added that he was "firmly of the opinion" that the Independent Complaints and Grievance Scheme investigation was "flawed, procedurally unfair and didn't comply with its own rules and regulations".
"It is my belief that they have operated outside of the powers given to them by Parliament and I am currently discussing with lawyers what action could and should be taken," he continued.
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