Lord Maginnis faces suspension for bullying and homophobic slurs towards MPs

Lord Maginnis should be suspended from the House of Lords for at least 18 months for bullying and harassment of three MPs and a security guard, the peers’ standards watchdog has recommended.

The recommendation from the Lords Conduct Committee follows an investigation into the Northern Irish peer’s treatment of a parliamentary security officer and MPs Hannah Bardell, Luke Pollard and Toby Perkins.

He was investigated after being “verbally abusive” to security officer Christian Bombolo when asked to show his parliamentary pass in January.

Hannah Bardell
The SNP’s Hannah Bardell said she was treated ‘rudely and aggressively’ by the peer (PA)

Ms Bardell witnessed the incident with Mr Bombolo.

She complained that when she attempted to intervene she was treated “rudely and aggressively” by Lord Maginnis, who later used “homophobic and derogatory language about her” in comments to the media.

Lord Maginnis was also investigated for using homophobic language in relation to Mr Pollard in February 2020 after the Labour MP’s chairing of a meeting.

The Lords Conduct Committee suggested Lord Maginnis’ suspension could be extended if he does not undergo training and change his ways.

In the committee’s report, it said: “In his oral appeal Lord Maginnis showed very little insight into the impact of his behaviour on the complainants, and no remorse for the upset he had caused.

“To the contrary, he portrayed himself as a victim of a conspiracy by people who disapproved of his views and insisted that all his conduct had been provoked.

“He also continued to refer to the complainants in a disobliging and sometimes offensive manner.”

Peers will have to approve the report before the suspension comes into force.

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