MP Mark Menzies resigns as police ‘evaluation letter’ in Tory marketing campaign funds misuse probe | Politics | News | EUROtoday

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Mark Menzies, the Fylde MP, has resigned from the Conservative Party and can go away Parliament when the following election takes place.

Mr Menzies has been accused of misusing political donations to cowl his medical bills and repay “bad people” who had locked him in a flat and demanded cash for his launch.

An investigation into the allegations, denied by Mr Menzies, concluded right now (Sunday), discovering that whereas there had not been a misuse of celebration funds, the MP’s behaviour fell under the required requirements and should have breached the Nolan ideas of public life.

Announcing his resignation, Mr Menzies mentioned: “It has been an enormous privilege representing the people of Fylde since 2010, but due to the pressures on myself and my elderly mother, I have decided to resign from the Conservative Party and will not stand at the forthcoming general election.

“This has been a really troublesome week for me and I request that my household’s privateness is revered.”

On Wednesday, The Times reported that Mr Menzies had called his 78-year old former campaign manager, Kate Fieldhouse, at 3.15am one day in December, claiming he was locked in a flat and needed £5,000 as a matter of “life and demise”.

The sum, which rose to £6,500, was eventually paid by his office manager from her personal bank account and subsequently reimbursed from funds raised from donors in an account named Fylde Westminster Group, it is alleged.

The Times also reported that £14,000 given by donors for Tory campaign activities was transferred to Mr Menzies’ personal bank accounts and used for private medical expenses.

On Sunday, a party spokesman said the money in question had been signed off by two signatories of the Fylde Westminster Group.

They said: “This physique sits exterior of the remit of each the Conservative Party and Fylde Conservative Association. Therefore we can not conclude that there was a misuse of Conservative Party funds.

“However, we do believe that there has been a pattern of behaviour that falls below the standards expected of MPs and individuals looking after donations to local campaign funds which lie outside the direct jurisdiction of the Conservative Party.”

The spokesman mentioned the Tories would retain people on managing such accounts and introduce a whistleblowing hotline.

They added: “Whilst outside the initial scope of this investigation, there has also been a recommendation that the actions of the MP in question have also potentially breached the Nolan principles of public life.

“This is as a result of nature of the allegations made, but in addition the repetitive nature of those separate allegations. These shall be reviewed by the Conservative Party’s member governance workforce.”

Opposition parties have called for the police to investigate the allegations made against Mr Menzies, and Lancashire Police said it was “reviewing the obtainable data” after receiving a complaint, understood to have been made by Labour Party chairwoman Anneliese Dodds.

The Conservatives said they would “share any data with the police in the event that they imagine it will be useful to any investigation they determine to undertake”.

Mr Menzies has been MP for Fylde since 2010, and won a majority of 16,611 at the last election. After the publication of allegations about his use of funds, he lost the Conservative whip and now sits as an Independent. He becomes the 101st MP to say he will not fight his seat at the next election.

ITV Granada reports Lancashire Police said it was reviewing “data” about Mr Menzies after Labour requested for an investigation.