MP Charlie Elphicke faces court over sex assault charges

Charlie Elphicke is a former Conservative MP

Friday, October 4, 2019

Charlie Elphicke has pleaded not guilty to three counts of sexual assault against two women dating back to 2007.

The independent MP for Dover has been accused of assaulting one woman in 2007 and two assaults against a different woman within a week in 2016.

In court the former Conservative MP confirmed his name, date of birth and nationality, and then denied charges of touching the two women without their consent.

His trial is expected to last up to three weeks and may involve at least 15 witnesses.

Judge Deborah Taylor granted Mr Elphicke bail and said he would return to Southwark Crown Court in June next year.

She also warned the public gallery after Mr Elphicke’s defence raised potentially illegal comments about the case that had been made on Twitter.

“It is not only news outlets that are subject to contempt of court rules. Members of the public who prejudge cases by posting comments on places such as Twitter or Facebook are subject too,” she said.

Mr Elphicke served as a Conservative MP from 2010 until November 2017, when he was suspended from the party over sexual assault allegations.

He was then readmitted to the party in 2018 ahead of a vote of no confidence in then-Prime Minister Theresa May.

His second stint in the party came to an end in July when he was formally charged by police.

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