Boris Johnson’s Lockdown-Breaking Parties Will Be Investigated by Police
For months, hardly a day goes by in the UK without the press revealing another party being held at Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s official residence while the rest of the country is in lockdown. On Tuesday, police finally confirmed that they would investigate if any of those parties broke the law.
The announcement of the investigation came the morning after what was believed to be the most serious report of a lockout party. In Monday, ITV News reported that a “birthday party” was held for Johnson during the first nationwide shutdown on June 19, 2020. It is thought that about 30 people gathered at 10 Downing Street to buy food and singing.
Before that, a wine party was said to have been held in Downing Street on the eve of Prince Philip’s funeral, where the queen sat alone due to government distancing regulations. Overall, the number of parties believed to be held by the government is also twice as high.
Despite the evidence presented in the papers, the London Metropolitan Police have repeatedly denied calls to investigate the parties — so far. Speaking Tuesday morning, Commissioner Cressida Dick confirmed her force would look into whether the government violated its own anti-pandemic laws.
The commissioner announced: “As a result of information provided by the Cabinet Office investigative team and second, the judgment of my own officers, I can confirm that the Met is currently investigating Several events have taken place in Downing Street and Whitehall over the past two years related to possible COVID-19 regulatory violations. ”
The investigation is another big blow for Johnson, whose popularity with the public and his own lawmakers has dwindled as party revelations keep coming. As of May 2020, police in England and Wales have issued a total of 118,9632 finessome up to 10,000 pounds ($13,500,) for breaking lockdown rules imposed by Johnson’s government.
The Prime Minister is under intense pressure to step down but has repeatedly said he will not speculate on his future until an internal report on Downing Street gatherings is released. The police investigation will delay the release of that internal report, which had been expected this week, and so could give Johnson a brief respite from pressure to quit.
But the launch of the Met probe will suggest that the report won’t have any good news for Johnson. The Met previously said it would only initiate an investigation if an internal investigation, being carried out by the civil service, “identifies evidence of conduct that is likely to be a criminal offence.” . Looks like the benchmark might have been hit.
After notification, a A spokesperson for Downing Street said:: “Currently in contact with the Metropolitan Police Department.”
No 10 had previously confirmed Monday’s reports of Johnson’s birthday gathering, commenting: “A group of staff members who worked in Number 10 that day gathered briefly in the Cabinet Room after the meeting. to celebrate the prime minister’s birthday. He was there for less than ten minutes.”
However, on Tuesday, government minister Grant Shapps defended his boss, telling Sky News: “The Prime Minister clearly didn’t organize for the cake… Some people came in first and thought it would. suitable for his birthday.”