Met must explain 'odd' decision not to fine Boris Johnson over leaving party, Sadiq Khan says

Boris Johnson raises a toast at Lee Cain's leaving do (Photo: No10 Downing Street)
Boris Johnson raises a toast at Lee Cain's leaving do (Photo: No10 Downing Street)

Boris Johnson raises a toast at Lee Cain's leaving do (Photo: No10 Downing Street)

The Metropolitan Police needs to explain its “odd” decision not to fine Boris Johnson for attending a Downing Street leaving party during lockdown, Sadiq Khan has said.

Pictures showed the prime minister raising a glass of wine at the event to mark the departure of his communications director, Lee Cain.

Although some of those in attendance did receive fixed penalty notices from the Met, Johnson did not.

Instead, the PM only received one fine for attending a surprise birthday party thrown for him in the Number 10 cabinet room.

Khan, who has previously asked the force for a “detailed explanation” for its decision-making, said there were still questions to be answered.

Appearing on the BBC’s Sunday Morning programme, he said: “I accept it does look odd in relation to the photographs we have now seen in relation to the knowledge we now have on who received a fixed penalty notice and who didn’t.

“What isn’t disputed is there was a culture of law-breaking in Downing Street - no other property received this many fines.”

The mayor added: “What we don’t want is the perception to be given that it is one rule for them, the rule-makers, and one rule for the rest of us.”

Former Met chief Lord Paddick has launched legal action over the way the force handled the partygate investigation.

Khan said: “What I’ve not seen and what Lord Paddick will maybe see in the court case is the evidence for each individual case.

“I’ve just seen the one photograph we saw in relation to Boris Johnson raising his glass – clearly a party atmosphere. I’ve not seen the responses to the questionnaires or the other photographs. That’s why it is right and proper for the court case to go ahead and for this to be looked into.”

Johnson faces another huge week at Westminster amid mounting speculation he could face a vote of no confidence in his leadership.

In a further blow for the PM, a new poll has revealed that the Tories are 20 points behind Labour in Wakefield, where voters will go to the polls on June 23 in a crunch by-election.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.

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