MP will not face charges over sex assault claims

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MP Mike Hancock will not face charges over allegations he sexually assaulted a female constituent, Hampshire Police said today.

Liberal Democrat Mr Hancock, 64, who represents Portsmouth South, was arrested over the allegations in October.

In a statement, the force said: 'Hampshire Constabulary can confirm that following consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), no further action is to be taken against MP Mike Hancock in relation to allegations of sexual assault.

'The decision from the CPS was that there was insufficient evidence upon which to charge Mr Hancock.

'The alleged victim has been notified by Hampshire Constabulary of this decision, as has Mr Hancock.'

Mr Hancock told The News: 'I'm very, very pleased. It's the best Christmas present I could possibly have had.

'It's been investigated at the highest possible level and I have been found to be innocent.

'I always stood by my innocence, which is why I refused to step down as some people requested.

'I think they have been to look very silly.

'There is a small group of people who are out to get me. They have thrown up these spurious claims, which have proven to be untrue.

'I have no doubt they will keep trying but I am delighted that I have been proven innocent because I didn't do anything wrong.'

A spokesman for the Crown Prosecution Service said: 'The CPS received a file of evidence from the Hampshire Constabulary on 8 December concerning allegations of sexual assault involving Michael Hancock MP and a constituent.

'The allegations centred on a series of visits to the home of the constituent by Mr Hancock between March and June 2010. Mr Hancock has stated these visits were made in his role as an MP and not for any personal purpose.

'After thoroughly reviewing the file, we have concluded there is insufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction as there is no evidence to disprove Mr Hancock's account of the nature of the visits.

'We have written to the complainant to explain our decision and offered her a meeting.'