Police investigate assault claim at venue of ex-MP Keith Vaz’s political return

By Patrick Daly, PA Political Correspondent

Police are investigating after an alleged assault took place at a venue where former MP Keith Vaz was making his political return.

Mr Vaz was elected chairman of the Leicester East Constituency Labour Party (CLP) at a meeting on Tuesday evening, having represented the same constituency since 1987.

The former minister did not stand for the seat at the election, after receiving a six-month Commons ban over drug allegations involving sex workers at his flat.

Police have confirmed they are looking into allegations of an assault at the Leicester venue where Mr Vaz’s election as chairman was held.

A spokeswoman for Leicestershire Police said: “We can confirm we received a report of an assault at the Belgrave Neighbourhood Centre yesterday evening.

“There are further investigations being carried out into the alleged assault to see if any criminal offences have occurred.”

According to Leicestershire Live, a Labour activist has complained to police of an injury to her right wrist as she attempted to get into the meeting, which about 150 people attended.

It is understood Mr Vaz’s successor, Claudia Webbe, was not at the meeting, its timing on Tuesday making it difficult to attend while the Commons was sitting.

Mr Vaz’s six-month Commons ban was the longest ever handed out to an MP.

A parliamentary inquiry looked at claims published in the Sunday Mirror in 2016 that he offered to buy cocaine for male sex workers while posing as an industrial washing machine salesman called Jim.

At the time, the Labour politician was chairman of the home affairs select committee, which was examining the issues of drug use and prostitution.

Mr Vaz, who complained of suffering from amnesia, told investigators the men were decorators, but his explanation was deemed “incredible” and “frankly ludicrous” by Parliament’s standards watchdog.