Lord Lester resigns from House of Lords amid sexual harassment allegations

Lord Lester

Lord Anthony Paul Lester. Image: UK Parliament

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

A peer accused of groping a woman and promising her a peerage in exchange for sex has resigned from the House of Lords.

Lord Lester of Herne Hill said an investigation into sexual harassment allegations against him had "taken a serious toll" on his health.

The Lords Privileges and Conduct Committee recommended that he should be suspended until June 2022, but fellow peers have backed a call to send his case back to the Parliamentary watchdog, claiming the original investigation was "manifestly unfair".

The committee is expected to reaffirm its recommendation of the ban on Wednesday.

 

 

Lord Lester told The Times newspaper that he would step down with immediate effect, claiming he did not have the "strength or health" to continue.

The 82-year-old was suspended by the Liberal Democrats when allegations that he groped and offered Jasvinder Sanghera "corrupt inducements" to have sex with him in 2006 first surfaced.

Lord Lester vehemently denies claims, branding them "completely untrue".

"I am sorry that this issue has caused so much upset to everyone involved and very much hope that the House of Lords will now take the long called-for step of reforming its procedures," he told the newspaper.