Suffolk MP Dr Dan Poulter accused of sexual harassment

Dr Dan Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich
Dr Dan Poulter, MP for Central Suffolk and North Ipswich

MP Dr Dan Poulter has pledged to “vigorously defend himself” after allegations emerged that he sexually harassed female MPs.

Dr Poulter, who represents Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, is under investigation by a new Conservative harassment watchdog.

The practising NHS doctor and ex-health minister is alleged to have placed his hand up female MPs’ skirts while inside a lift in the House of Commons.

MP Andrew Bridgen reported his fellow Conservative MP after originally raising concerns in 2010.

A spokeswoman for Dr Poulter said: “Dr Poulter denies all allegations of misconduct or inappropriate behaviour and will vigorously defend himself against any such claims.

“The story is now in the hands of his lawyers.”

The allegations have been referred to a new disciplinary committee, which will now conduct its own investigation.

Nikki Packham, chairman of the Suffolk Branch of the Women’s Equality Party (WEP), said: “This weekend’s allegations of sexual impropriety by Dr Dan Poulter need answers.

“We at WEP Suffolk welcome the fact that Dr Poulter has been referred to the Conservative Party’s new disciplinary committee, but we do not want to see a whitewash.

“His constituents need and deserve a transparent process if they are to have faith in the outcome.”