Boris Johnson staff ‘had sex at No 10 lockdown party’

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Some of Boris Johnson’s staff are said to have had sex at a Downing Street party on the eve of Prince Philip’s funeral while strict Covid restrictions were still in place.

Two couples were seen getting “intimate” by several witnesses at a raucous party which continued past 4am, according to The Times – with one couple seen going into an office “with the lights off”.

Another couple was seen “feeling each other up” in a No 10 kitchen before retreating into an office room, the newspaper said. They came out of the dark room “flustered”.

The latest claims emerged as the former prime minister came under pressure over a joke he allegedly made about a 13 November 2020 leaving do being “the most unsocially distanced party” in the UK.

The claim – not denied by his spokesperson – made at the No 10 leaving party for ex-director of communications Lee Cain, one official told ITV’s Partygate: The Inside Story.

The revelation is among several damning new allegations – including claims No 10 staff shredded evidence and staff were seen “getting it on” at the party on 16 April 2021, the eve of Philip’s funeral in April 2021.

Around 30 people attended the two leaving drinks events which took place on the eve of the funeral, which Mr Johnson did not attend.

Staff brought in a “suitcase of wine” bought from the Co-op to the party, which saw both events merge. All socialising indoors was banned at the time, and gatherings were allowed for “work purposes” only.

One source told the ITV podcast that key documents and evidence about parties during the pandemic were shredded before the Sue Gray-Cabinet Office probe and eventual police investigation.

But No 10 said on Thursday on staff had been told to “retain” all revenant information. “There was an investigation into those incidents which were reported and was also looked into by the Met police,” said Rishi Sunak’s official spokesperson.

The No 10 spokesperson added: “At all times staff were given clear guidance to retain any relevant information and cooperate with the investigation. The [Sue Gray] report was published in full.”

Tory MPs told The Independent that Mr Johnson’s rumoured political comeback has been dealt a fatal blow by claims he joked about attending an “unsocially distanced” party.

One said it would make it harder for Mr Johnson to avoid punishment when the investigation by the privileges committee concludes. “It’s the final nail in his self-created comeback coffin,” the MP told The Independent.

Another senior figure, a former minister, said: “This will make the privileges committee inquiry more difficult for Boris – if this is stood up, he clearly knew what was going on.”

Labour said the latest Partygate claims show why Mr Johnson was “totally unfit for office” – accusing him of lying to the public about how he broke rules with “reckless abandon”.

The Liberal Democrats said Rishi Sunak should give evidence on “everything he knows about rule-breaking in No10 – including reports that files were shredded”.

Mr Johnson was fined as part of a Metropolitan Police investigation into gatherings held in Downing Street while social distancing restrictions were in place.

However, the then-PM was fined for attending his own birthday party in the cabinet room in June 2020 rather than for the 13 November 2020 leaving do – which saw some fines issued to staff.