Angela Rayner: Police will take no further action against Labour's deputy leader over housing claims

28 May 2024, 14:50 | Updated: 28 May 2024, 17:51

Police will take no further action against Labour's Angela Rayner after accusations surrounding her living arrangements in 2010.

Officers from Greater Manchester Police (GMP) launched an investigation into the party's deputy leader earlier this year, after reports suggested she may have lived primarily at her then husband's address in Stockport, despite registering to vote under her own nearby - which could be a breach of electoral rules.

Ms Rayner repeatedly denied the claims and the force had initially decided against looking into them.

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But they later received a complaint from Tory MP James Daly, informing them of claims made by neighbours that contradicted the Labour MP's statements, and so they opened a probe.

Now, the force has released a statement saying it had completed "a thorough, carefully considered and proportionate investigation [and] have concluded that no further police action will be taken".

Releasing a statement, Ms Rayner welcomed the announcement, and attacked the Tories, claiming they had used "desperate tactics" against her.

"We have seen the Conservative Party use this playbook before - reporting political opponents to the police during election campaigns to distract from their dire record," she said.

"The public have had enough of these desperate tactics from a Tory government with nothing else to say after 14 years of failure."

The deputy leader added: "I am grateful to all those who have stood by and supported me and my family. My focus now is squarely on securing the change Britain needs, with the election of a Labour government."

The force's statement said it has passed information from their investigation on to both Stockport Council and His Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) as further allegations had been made in the press that she avoided paying capital gains tax when she sold her ex-council house - something she again denied.

However, it is understood HMRC looked into the matter at Ms Rayner's request and concluded there was no capital gains tax liability.

Explaining why they had launched the probe, the force said: "The investigation originated from complaints made by Mr James Daly MP directly to GMP.

"Subsequent further contact with GMP by members of the public, and claims made by individuals featured in media reporting, indicated a strong public interest in the need for allegations to be investigated."

They added: "Matters involving council tax and personal tax do not fall into the jurisdiction of policing.

"GMP has liaised with Stockport Council and information about our investigation has been shared with them. Details of our investigation have also been shared with His Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC)."

A spokesperson from HMRC said they could not comment on individuals due to taxpayer confidentiality law.

Meanwhile, a Stockport Council spokesperson said: "Stockport Council has reviewed and responded to all correspondence relating to this matter, including information received from Greater Manchester Police (GMP) who have concluded that no further police action will be taken.

"We have also concluded that no further action will be taken on behalf of the council."

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A Labour Party spokesperson said: "The police have now completed their investigation into claims made by the Conservative Party deputy chairman and have concluded that no further action will be taken. Angela cooperated fully with the police investigation throughout.

"Angela has always been clear that she was not liable for capital gains tax on the sale of the home she owned before she was an MP, that she was properly registered to vote, and paid the appropriate council tax. She took expert tax and legal advice which confirms this.

"This draws a line under the matter."