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Leaked emails over Mike Hancock scandal

Liberal Democrat MP Mike Hancock has been arrested on suspicion of indecent assault following allegations of improper behaviour towards a female constituent.

I've been passed emails showing councillors in his Portsmouth constituency are struggling to work out how to deal with him, with his Lib Dem colleagues refusing to condemn their local MP.

Dear Cllr Vernon-Jackson

Following a telephone call from The News tonight, asking for my comments, I am given to understand that Cllr Mike Hancock MP has been arrested by Hampshire Police over an allegation of indecent assault against a vulnerable adult.

I trust that you will now cast aside your Party political bias in favour of your Liberal Democrat colleague and put the interests of the City first and relieve him of all positions of responsibility within Portsmouth City Council. I have asked that of you before (letter and email of 26 September) and you have put up spurious and factually incorrect arguments in a feeble letter defending Cllr Hancock. Yet you have demanded even more than that of the opposition in the recent past when seeking the expulsion of a councillor from his group when he too was arrested. As you said to me in writing at that time “I absolutely recognise people are innocent until proven guilty, but the charges against the Councillor are extremely severe ....”. That Councillor stood down at the request of his group leader.

Contrast that with your inaction. According to the Council’s rules you are the only person who can relieve Cllr.Hancock of his responsibilities and, so far, you have failed to do so.

Inaction on your part would just expose publicly a double standard you are engaged in for Party Political advantage.

Further, if you fail to take action the Conservative group will continue the process of calling the special council meeting they have already started.

Yours sincerely

Cllr Steve Wemyss

Conservative Group Leader, Portsmouth City Council


cc all members of the Council

Dear Councillor Wemyss,

I acknowledge receipt of your email sent at 02:04 this morning, and continue to recognise your aim to use this issue for party political reasons.

When I knock on doors in Portsmouth I find someone on almost every street who tells me how Mike Hancock has help make their lives better. Mike is by far the best MP this city has had for many years. I continue to think that Mike should continue to be allowed to continue his work for local people.

Yours sincerely

Gerald Vernon-Jackson



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