Boris ‘was told of formal Pincher complaint that led to disciplinary process’

The prime minister said yesterday that no allegations he knew of progressed to a formal complaint (Picture: Reuters)

Boris Johnson is facing claims he was informed of a formal complaint of Chris Pincher’s ‘inappropriate behaviour’ that allegedly led to a disciplinary process two years ago.

The government was plunged into a fresh crisis when Mr Pincher quit last week over allegations he groped two men at a Conservative private members’ club. He is reported to deny them.

On Monday morning, Downing Street said the prime minister was not aware of specific allegations before Mr Pincher was made deputy chief whip in February.

Hours later, a spokesperson admitted he was ‘aware’ of accusations but insisted it would have been ‘not appropriate’ for him to step in as they were ‘either resolved or did not progress to a formal complaint’.

Now, the BBC claims Mr Johnson was told of a formal complaint about Mr Pincher’s ‘inappropriate behaviour’ while the MP was a minister in the Foreign Office from 2019-20.

The Cabinet Office oversaw a process that concluded in a report that confirmed misconduct, it’s alleged.

When the disciplinary process came to an end, Mr Pincher apologised, it’s claimed. The MP hasn’t offered comment on this.

The news was also reportedly shared with Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab, who was foreign secretary at the time.

Boris Johnson Tory Party deputy chief whip Chris Pincher QUITS after claims he ?drunkenly groped two men? in the Conservative Party?s private members venue the Carlton Club Chris Pincher said he owed it to the Prime Minister and those he 'upset' to resign Deputy chief whip is alleged to have drunkenly groped men at event last night It is understood that Mr Pincher will stay on as Conservative MP for Tamworth
Chris Pincher has denied the allegations

Downing Street has previously said advice was received from the government’s propriety and ethics team before Mr Pincher was appointed. They did not advise against the decision.

The Foreign Office has said ‘robust measures’ are in place to respond to any allegations of inappropriate behaviour’.  They added: ‘It’s our long-standing policy not to comment on individual cases’.

It comes as a No 10 staffer alleges to The Independent that the Tory leader was given a ‘first-hand account’ of inappropriate sexual behaviour by Mr Pincher before his appointment to the role of deputy chief whip

He was apparently told before Mr Pincher’s formal appointment to deputy chief whip on 8 February, and then again in May when reports emerged of inappropriate behaviour. Number 10 has declined to comment on both alleged conversations.

A spokesman also refused to comment on a claim by Mr Johnson’s former chief adviser Dominic Cummings that the Prime Minister had referred to the MP as ‘Pincher by name, pincher by nature’.

Another report from Sky News claims Carrie Johnson openly questioned Chris Pincher’s suitability as government whip as far back as 2017.

The news outlet claims to have seen correspondence from the PM’s now-wife when she was communications director at CCHQ in 2017.

Mr Pincher previously stood down from the whips’ office in 2017 after being accused of making an unwanted pass at an activist.

KIGALI, RWANDA - JUNE 23: Carrie Johnson, wife of Prime Minister Boris Johnson attends a Violence Against Women and Girls event at the Kigali Convention Centre on June 23, 2022 in Kigali, Rwanda. Prince Charles, Prince of Wales has attended five of the 24 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting meetings held since 1971: Edinburgh in 1997, Uganda in 2007, Sri Lanka in 2013 (representing The Queen), Malta in 2015 and the UK in 2018. It was during the UK CHOGM that it was formally announced that The Prince would succeed The Queen as Head of the Commonwealth. Leaders of Commonwealth countries meet every two years for the meeting which is hosted by a different member country on a rotating basis. (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
Carrie Johnson openly questioned how Mr Pincher had ever ended up in the whips’ office in 2017, it’s claimed (Picture: Chris Jackson Collection)

He was cleared of any breach of the Tory Party’s code of conduct following an investigation.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has said he has ‘no sympathy with a prime minister who repeatedly makes bad judgment calls’.

Meanwhile, Deputy Labour Leader Angela Rayner has said the ‘logical’ thing to do before appointing someone in a new role would be to investigate allegations against them.

She said: ‘If you work in HR, if you’re a trade unionist or anyone else and someone says “oh, I’ve heard this rumour”, I’d want to find out and see whether that rumour is correct or not, rather than just say, “well, it’s just a rumour, I’ll give you a top job over (the) welfare of other MPs”, to be honest.

‘So I find it speaks to the character of Boris Johnson, if that’s the way he felt to deal with that at that time.’ has contacted No 10 for further comment.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at [email protected].

For more stories like this, check our news page.

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