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Boris Johnson was NOT questioned about a party he was pictured at – as others were fined

Boris Johnson is accused of lying to Parliament as four images show him raising a glass with helpers around a table laden with alcohol and party food during lockdown

Boris Johnson was pictured at a party during lockdown
Boris Johnson was pictured at a party during lockdown

Boris Johnson raises a toast to a No10 lockdown bash he has denied ever happened in one of a series of photos blasting a hole in his Partygate defence.

Others at the event are said to have received fines, but not the Prime Minister.

A source said: “It’s incredible that he wasn’t even questioned when he instigated the event – even pouring the drinks.”

The Prime Minister is accused of lying to Parliament as four pictures show him raising a glass with aides around a table laden with alcohol and party food.

Sources told the Mirror the photos were taken at an exit at No 10 on November 13 last year, when people from different households were banned from mixing indoors.

In the House of Commons the following month, Mr Johnson denied there had been a party at No 10 that day.

He was asked by Labor MP Catherine West on December 8, a week after the Mirror first revealed lockdown parties, if he would confirm the event. He replied: “No. But I’m sure that whatever happened, the instructions were followed and the rules were observed at all times.”







The photos emerged after the Prime Minister claimed he was unaware of a rule-breaking at Downing Street during the pandemic
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Picture:

ITV News)

Mr Johnson is already facing an inquiry from the Privileges Committee into whether he misled Parliament by claiming no rules were broken in No 10. Ministers who knowingly mislead the House of Commons are expected to resign.

Tory MP Roger Gale has said the “damn” pictures taken at an exit for the Prime Minister’s former spin doctor Lee Cain meant Mr Johnson should quit.

He added: “It is absolutely clear that there was a party, that he attended, that he toasted one of his colleagues.

“That’s why he misled us out of the shipping box. And frankly, there is an answer. We have to have someone at the top that we can really rely on.”

Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross, who previously urged the Prime Minister to resign before changing his mind, said: “The Prime Minister must explain why he thinks this behavior is acceptable.







The photos were taken at a gathering honoring then Downing Street communications director Lee Cain
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Picture:

ITV News)

“For most, these images seem unjustifiable and wrong.”

And Labor Deputy Leader Angela Rayner said: “While the British public was making enormous sacrifices, Boris Johnson broke the law.

“Boris Johnson has repeatedly said he was unaware of any violations of the law. Now there is no doubt: he lied.”

Angry insiders claimed other attendees at the bash were fined for the event – but the prime minister escaped without a further fine.

The photos, leaked to ITV News on the eve of Sue Gray’s long-awaited Partygate report, emerged hours after former No10 aide Dominic Cummings claimed the pictures would be released “within the next 24 to 48 hours”. .

They appear to show the Prime Minister toasting Mr Cain next to a table with two bottles of sparkling wine, four bottles of wine and a bottle of gin.







The prime minister received only a fine
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Picture:

REUTERS)

Sources in the room told the Mirror that while only eight Downing Street aides were pictured, more were present but not in the picture.

They also claimed Mr Johnson “instigated” the event, gathering staff around the table and pouring drinks before leaving 15 minutes later. A source at the party said: “It is absolutely unforgivable that the Met fined people for this event, but Boris got off scot-free. It’s incredible that he wasn’t even interrogated let alone fined for instigating the event and even pouring the drinks.

“The police must clearly explain how they came to their decisions.”

Brian Paddick, former Deputy Assistant Commissioner for the Metropolitan Police, told LBC radio: “It is very damaging to the Met for the public to see these photos. Because the public will think, “If I was caught in a photo like that, I would face a fine”. And the Met needs to explain why the Prime Minister wasn’t. I think they may not have investigated this as thoroughly as they could have because they didn’t want to upset No10.”







Sue Gray’s report is due out in a few days
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Picture:

PRU/AFP via Getty Images)

The Mirror revealed last week that the Prime Minister was only under investigation over two incidents – a gathering at his official home the same evening as the departure and his Cabinet Room birthday party for which he was fined.

Eight days before the November Thursday, England had gone back into strict lockdown due to rising Covid cases. The next day, the Prime Minister issued a video message saying that the Diwali celebrations could not take place in a normal way because of the pandemic. He added, “Getting together with friends and family won’t always be possible.”

Just hours before the photos were released, Mr Cummings said the Prime Minister was faced with the release of Partygate photos that would show he “obviously lied to the Commons and possibly the cops”. Mr Cummings appeared to suggest images could be released of disgruntled junior civil servants being fined for lockdown breaches, while the PM did not.

Ms Gray’s report, due to be released today, could also include photos of events. The senior official gave Scotland Yard more than 300 images from her investigation.

Scotland Yard announced last week that it had imposed fines for an event on November 13, 2021. The Lib Dems called on the independent Bureau of Police Conduct to investigate why the Prime Minister had not received one.

Downing Street declined to defend the snaps, suggesting the Met had already seen them.

A spokeswoman for No10 said: “The Cabinet Office and Met Police had access to all information relevant to their investigation, including photographs. The Met has completed its investigation and Sue Gray will publish her report in the coming days, after which the Prime Minister will address Parliament in full.”

Some insiders believe the prime minister may have avoided a fine because police deemed his presence “reasonably necessary” for work purposes. However, junior aides who stayed longer may not have been covered by the exemption.

The five questions that need to be answered

1 How did PM escape a fine when others received it upon Lee Cain’s departure?

2. Have the Met Police seen the pictures of the Prime Minister raising a glass to it?
rule-breaking meeting?

3 Did the Prime Minister intentionally mislead MPs when he told them all the rules were obeyed on November 13, 2020?

4 Why did the Met police only investigate Boris Johnson at two of the six meetings he attended?

5 How did MPs and Tory aides get away without fines when younger officers at the same events got them?

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https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/boris-johnson-not-questioned-party-27046341 Boris Johnson was NOT questioned about a party he was pictured at - as others were fined

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