Five more police officers alleged to have placed bets on general election timing - Met Police

25 June 2024, 13:14 | Updated: 25 June 2024, 14:44

Five more police officers are alleged to have placed bets on the timing of the general election, the Met Police has said.

The force said the Gambling Commission has passed information to it about the officers after Rishi Sunak's close protection officer was arrested last week over alleged bets on a July election.

The Conservatives' election campaign has been plunged into crisis as two Tory candidates, two officials, and the officer are being investigated by the gambling watchdog over the placing of bets on the timing of the election.

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Earlier on Tuesday, the Conservative Party withdrew its support for the two candidates being investigated - Craig Williams and Laura Saunders.

They will still appear on ballot papers as Conservative candidates as it is too late to change them ahead of next Thursday's vote but they will have no support for the rest of the campaign from the party and cannot call themselves Conservatives.

Whether they will remain as Conservatives after the election depends on the outcome of the Gambling Commission's investigation, it is understood.

The move came after Mr Sunak faced nearly two weeks of pressure to suspend them but had previously said he was waiting to see what the commission's investigation came up with.

A Met Police spokesman said: "We previously confirmed the arrest of a Met officer on Monday, 17 June for misconduct in public office in relation to bets placed on the timing of the general election.

"The officer - a police constable from the Royalty and Specialist Protection Command - is on restricted duties.

"It is still the case that only one officer is under criminal investigation.

"We have, however, been passed information from the Gambling Commission alleging that five further officers have placed bets related to the timing of the election.

"The officers are based on the Royalty and Specialist Command, the Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command and the Central West Basic Command Unit. None of them work in a close protection role.

"Decisions on whether they will be subject to any restrictions will be taken in due course."

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