‘Raises new questions’ Tory MP demands police confirm details of Starmer beergate probe

Conservative Bassetlaw MP Brendan Clarke-Smith said: “This raises new questions and I am sure the public would like to know whether Durham Police have liaised with Labour’s Police and Crime Commissioner over the Beergate investigation and of any involvement she may or may not have had.

“The public will expect this to be revealed once they have concluded their enquiries, as part of an open and transparent process.”

In its response the force refused to confirm whether it holds or does not hold communications on the original investigation to or from Ms Allen.

Explaining its decision, the force said: “As this is currently an active / open investigation, the public interest balance has fallen in favour of not confirming or denying that any information is held in relation to your request.

“It is also in the Public Interest that Durham Constabulary maintains its Law Enforcement capabilities.”

In a further response to an appeal, the force said that a fresh FOI application could be made when the current investigation was concluded.

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In his response to the Partygate report in Parliament, Mr Starmer today said that the event he attended was nothing like the ones in Downing Street where there a number of parties and 126 police fines have been issued.

He said: “I have not broken any rules, and any attempt to compare a perfectly legal takeaway while working to this catalogue of criminality looks even more ridiculous today, but if the police decide otherwise, I will do the decent thing and step down. 

“The public need to know that not all politicians are the same—that not all politicians put themselves above their country—and that honesty, integrity and accountability matter.”

Labour initially denied Ms Rayner was at the event and later admitted she was. Also Mr Starmer initially said there were six people present, changed that to 15 and later 20 people received questionnaires.

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