Minister resigns after being found guilty of breaching parliamentary privilege
PUBLISHED: 11:56 04 May 2020 | UPDATED: 12:11 04 May 2020
A minister has resigned after being found in breach of his parliamentary privilege, which he used to resolve a debt dispute.
Become a Supporter
Almost four years after its creation The New European goes from strength to strength across print and online, offering a pro-European perspective on Brexit and reporting on the political response to the coronavirus outbreak, climate change and international politics. But we can only continue to grow with your support.
Conor Burns, an international trade minister, stepped down following a Commons standards committee report calling for his suspension.
The committee recommended the MP for Bournemouth West be suspended for seven days after it found him guilty of using his status to threatened a member of the public over a debt dispute involving his father.
You may also want to watch:
The committee wrote found his culpable of “an attempt to intimidate a member of the public into doing as Mr Burns wished, in a dispute relating to purely private family interests which had no connection with Mr Burns’ parliamentary duties, that he persisted in making veiled threats to use parliamentary privilege to further his family’s interests even during the course of the commissioner’s investigation, and that he misleadingly implied that his conduct had the support of the House authorities.”
The Bournemouth West MP had allegedly attempted to secure a payment to his father by suggesting he may use parliamentary privilege to raise the case in the Commons unless he secured the payment to his father.
A Downing Street spokesman confirmed the resignation, saying “a replacement will be announced in due course.”
Burns has since tweeted: “With deep regret I have decided to resign as Minister of State for International Trade. @BorisJohnson will continue to have my wholehearted support from the backbenches.”
Become a Supporter
Almost four years after its creation The New European goes from strength to strength across print and online, offering a pro-European perspective on Brexit and reporting on the political response to the coronavirus outbreak, climate change and international politics. But we can only rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press with your support. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.Become a supporter