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Imran Ahmad Khan quits as Wakefield MP after sexually assaulting 15-year-old boy
3 May 2022, 15:21 | Updated: 3 May 2022, 15:50
Former Tory MP Imran Ahmad Khan has formally quit his Wakefield seat following his conviction for sexual assault, the Treasury said.
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Khan, 48, the MP for Wakefield in West Yorkshire, was previously expelled from the Tory Party with "immediate effect" after a jury found him guilty of sexual assault on a 15-year-old boy.
Khan announced his intention to resign on April 14 but did not complete the formalities until last week, meaning he received his full taxpayer-funded salary for last month.
Khan had been resisting calls to resign until conceding it would be it "intolerable" for voters in the West Yorkshire constituency to have muted representation while he appeals the conviction.
But he said the move would allow him to "focus entirely on clearing my name".
Khan dragged the teenager upstairs, pushed him onto a bed and asked him to watch pornography before the attack at a house in Staffordshire, a court heard.
The victim, now in his late 20s, told a jury he was left feeling "scared, vulnerable, numb, shocked and surprised" after Khan touched his feet and legs, coming within "a hair's breadth" of his privates, as he tried to sleep in a top bunkbed.
Khan, who is gay and a Muslim, denied sexual assault, claiming he only touched the Catholic teenager's elbow when he "became extremely upset" after a conversation about his confused sexuality.
But the MP was found guilty by a jury at Southwark Crown Court on Monday after around five hours of deliberations.
Khan will be sentenced at a later date.
During Khan's trial, the victim, now 29, told the court he ran to his parents and a police report was made at the time, but no further action was taken because the youngster did not want to make a formal complaint.
But he told jurors "it all came flooding back" when he learned Khan was standing in the December 2019 general election.
The Tory hopeful was literally parachuted into the constituency in a skydiving stunt after he was selected to replace Antony Calvert weeks before the election.
Days ahead of the poll, the victim said he contacted the Conservative Party press office, to tell them what Khan had done to him, but added: "I wasn't taken very seriously."
Khan, who was sent a questionnaire by Staffordshire Police rather than being interviewed under caution at a station because of "Covid protocols in place at the time", denied sexual assault.
Khan, then 34, said he was trying to be "kind" and "helpful", but the teenager became upset and "bolted" when the topic of pornography was raised.
Janes Solicitors, the firm representing Khan, said in a statement: "Our client Imran Ahmad Khan MP maintains his innocence and will be appealing as soon as possible."
The Conservative party now face a challenging by-election in Wakefield.
Labour had held the seat since the 1930s until Mr Khan's victory in the 2019 general election, when he won by 3,358 over Labour former frontbencher Mary Creagh.
But the resignation sets up a tricky battle for the Tories to retain the seat.
Mr Johnson will battle to retain the constituency after facing months of bruising allegations centring on Covid law-breaking parties in Downing Street and after he was personally fined.
But Sir Keir will feel pressure to win back the seat that had been Labour since the 1930s as he tries to prove to voters the party has transformed since he took over from Jeremy Corbyn.