Mark Pritchard MP’s potential defection from Conservative to UKIP thwarted by unfounded rape allegation

If Pritchard was about to jump ship, the allegations proved a highly effective way of stopping him.  Now the election campaigns have been launched (except by UKIP), it is probably now too late for Pritchard to do a Carswell and  Reckless, calling a byelection as the UKIP candidate.  Pritchard’s opportunity to become the third UKIP MP has been successfully thwarted.
Photographed with Nigel Farage in November.  It looked like the next defection was on.  But the machine then moved in.  Reckless and Carswell kept their defections very guarded secrets until they jumped.  You can see why.
The BBC reports –

MP Pritchard urges review of rape anonymity after case dropped

Conservative MP Mark Pritchard says he is “glad its all over” after rape allegations against him were dropped.

MP Mark Pritchard has urged a review of the law on anonymity for people accused of rape after police dropped an inquiry into allegations against him.

Police said there was “insufficient evidence” to take further action against the Tory MP for The Wrekin after he was arrested last month.

Speaking outside Parliament, the MP said it had been a “testing time” for him and he was “glad that it was over”.

He urged “greater fairness” under the law for those accused of sex offences.

At the moment, those who say they are victims of rape and other sex offences are granted life-long anonymity but the same legal protection is not afforded to those accused of such offences.

‘Awful’In a short statement outside the House of Commons, Mr Pritchard thanked fellow MPs and constituents for supporting him since the news of his arrest emerged six weeks ago.

Referring to the allegation made against him, he said “sadly, as an MP, sometimes you have a target on your back”.

“To be falsely accused of anything is an awful thing,” he told reporters.

“Of course (my accuser) remains anonymous,” he said. “The law on anonymity does need to be reviewed and fairness does need to play a far greater role in these cases.”

Mr Pritchard was arrested on 2 December following an alleged incident in central London. The MP voluntarily attended a police station for questioning and was bailed pending further inquiries.

But police said on Tuesday that he would face no further action as there was “insufficient evidence”.

A police spokesman said: “A 48-year-old man voluntarily attended a north London police station on Tuesday, 2 December where he was arrested, following an allegation of rape in central London.

“He returned on bail on 6 January where he was informed he will face no further action as there was insufficient evidence.”

Mr Pritchard won his seat in 2010 with a majority of more than 9,000 and served as secretary of the influential Conservative 1922 committee for two years until 2012.

He is a member of Parliament’s joint national security strategy committee. He has dismissed reports in recent months that he could possibly defect to UKIP.


2 Responses to “Mark Pritchard MP’s potential defection from Conservative to UKIP thwarted by unfounded rape allegation”

  1. erwin toseland says:

    so why don’t we all claim tories ,labour and espacially libdems have raped us ?. now these are something we CAN prove.

  2. Gary says:

    Sounds familiar. UKIP’s treasurer accused of propositioning rising star. Turns out that said rising star was a former Labour activist who was in a relationship with the man when he allegedly propositioned her. I’m not a UKIP supporter, far from it, but I know dirty tricks when I see them. There seem to be two factions. The rabidly anti-UKIP who will use smears and accusations to try and prevent UKIP building momentum and the rabidly PRO-UKIP faction who report on them as if they are a mainstream party, follow Nigel Farage around like puppies and get him on to Question Time more than a dozen times to the exclusion of parties with much greater numbers of MPs, members etc such as the Greens, SNP and others. This battle behind the scenes is untroubled by democratic process and also, I suspect, untroubled by the parties themselves. As we’ve seen before, behind the scenes interference in democratic politics from those who are supposed to work for us. For them, I suspect, UKIP would only be a stepping stone, too wishy washy and not far enough to the right for them. Regardless of the result we need to ensure it has not been interfered with. They are chancing their luck far too often and making a mockery of our democracy..

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