Keir Starmer: Labour leader not fined by Durham Police over ‘beergate’ saga
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Sir Keir was investigated by the force after it emerged he shared a beer and curry with other Labour staff members at a venue in the city last April.
He and deputy leader Angela Rayner vowed to resign their posts if they were fined.
It came after government figures including former prime minister Boris Johnson and former chancellor Rishi Sunak were fined by the Met Police for breaking lockdown rules during a series of illegal gatherings dubbed ‘partygate’.
In a statement released today (Friday, July 8), Durham Police said: “Following the emergence of significant new information, an investigation was launched by Durham Constabulary into a gathering at the Miners’ Hall, in Redhills, Durham on April 30, 2021.
“That investigation has now concluded.
“A substantial amount of documentary and witness evidence was obtained which identified the 17 participants and their activities during that gathering.
“Following the application of the evidential Full Code Test, it has been concluded that there is no case to answer for a contravention of the regulations, due to the application of an exception, namely reasonably necessary work.
“Accordingly, Durham Constabulary will not be issuing any fixed penalty notices in respect of the gathering and no further action will be taken.
“The investigation has been thorough, detailed and proportionate. The final evidence supplied by participants from the local constituency was returned to Durham Police on July 5, and analysed by investigators against all the evidence before the investigation was concluded on July 8, 2022.
“In line with established national policing guidelines, we will not name or otherwise identify any of those present at the gathering, all of whom have been informed of the investigation outcome by their legal representatives.”
The Labour leader said: “I’ve always said no rules were broken when I was in Durham.
“The police have completed their investigation and agreed: there is no case to answer.
“For me, this was always a matter of principle. Honesty and integrity matter.
“You will always get that from me.”
While Angela Rayner added: “We’ve always been clear that no rules were broken in Durham.
“The police have completed their investigation and agreed, saying that there is no case to answer.
“Integrity matters in politics. The contrast with the behaviour of this disgraced Prime Minister couldn’t be clearer.”