Gay Tory MP who called for sex abuse suspects to stay anonymous after being cleared of sex charges has been quizzed over new groping claims
- The incident allegedly happened in 2014 at Nigel Evans’ Westminster flat
- The man only came forward after he saw a photo of Evans with Sir Cliff Richard
- Mr Evans has strenuously denied the new claims saying he never knew the victim
- The Tory MP was cleared of nine sexual offences six months before the incident
- He has since campaigned for sexual abuse suspects to be granted anonymity
A Tory MP who called for sex abuse suspects to be granted anonymity is at the centre of a new groping claim.
Nigel Evans, MP for Ribble Valley in Lancashire, has been accused by a 28-year-old man.
The incident allegedly happened in October 2014 after the pair spent an evening drinking together at Evans’ Westminster flat.
But the man only contacted police in August 2016 after he saw pictures of Mr Evans with Sir Cliff Richard and Paul Gambaccini, who’d both been cleared of sexual abuse allegations.
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The man came forward with the new allegation after he saw a picture of Evans with Sir Cliff Richard and presenter Paul Gambaccini, who’d both been falsely accused of sexual offences
He said the incident allegedly happened after the two men sat on the sofa drinking wine together, the Daily Mirror reported.
Metropolitan Police detectives investigated for four months and questioned Mr Evans under caution.
A file was sent to the Crown Prosecution Service in November, but they decided that he should’t be charged – citing inconsistencies in the man’s accounts.
Prosecutors thought that some sections of the man’s accountant undermined each other.
The man alleged that the incident happened in October 2014 – six months after Evans was cleared of nine sexual offences at Preston Crown Court
Mr Evans, who has strenuously denied the latest claims, said: ‘It is absolutely not going anywhere and it doesn’t stack up.
‘We have complained to the police about this guy. I never knew him before and I’ve not seen him since.’
The allegations were made just six months after the 59-year-old MP was cleared at Preston Crown Court of nine sexual offences.
Friends and supporters of Nigel Evans outside Preston Crown Court. It only took the jury six hours to find Mr Evans not guilty
One was for rape, five were for sexual assault, one was for attempted sexual assault and two was for indecent assault.
In 2003, Evans was said to have indecently assaulted two men in their 20s when he approached them in public places while drunk and put his hand down their trousers – one in a Soho bar and the other at a hotel bar during the 2003 Tory party conference in Blackpool.
Another complainant said he was sexually assaulted by Evans while sleeping on the sofa at the MP’s Lancashire home in July 2009.
The MP for Ribble Valley in Lancashire said he went through ’11 months of hell’ because of the allegations
The other friend said Evans ‘cupped’ his genitals in the same bar when introduced to him in 2010 – an allegation Evans labelled ‘absurd’.
It took the jury less then six hours to acquit him of the sex offences against the seven men.
Mr Evans clasped his hands and wiped away tears as he heard the verdict and said he’d gone through ’11 months of hell’.
After being cleared of the charges the former deputy speaker said the weak allegations had been ‘bundled together’.
Mr Evans has called for sexual abuse suspects to be granted anonymity, like the victims
He told BBC Radio 4: ‘I’ve likened it to being hit by an Eddie Stobart truck as soon as you wake up, and several times during the day. The only worse thing I could have been accused of was murder.
‘The people who are throwing the mud remain anonymous, yet I was put into the full glare of world publicity from day one, as soon as the police knocked on the door. This is something that needs to be looked at.’