Rishi Sunak 'incredibly angry' over election betting allegations as he vows to 'boot out' anyone guilty of wrongdoing

21 June 2024, 02:06 | Updated: 21 June 2024, 02:08

Rishi Sunak said he is 'incredibly angry' over election date betting allegations.
Rishi Sunak said he is 'incredibly angry' over election date betting allegations. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Rishi Sunak has said he is 'incredibly angry' over election betting allegations as he vowed to 'boot out' anyone found guilty of wrongdoing from the party.

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A string of people with links to either the Conservative Party or No10 are alleged to have placed bets on the timing of the July 4 election before Mr Sunak announced it.

Conservative candidate Laura Saunders, who is one of the people being investigated, said she "will be co-operating with the Gambling Commission".

She is the wife of Tony Lee, the Conservative Director of Campaigns, who has taken "a leave of absence" amid investigations into the betting scandal.

It came after the arrest of one of the Prime Minister's police protection officers and the previous revelation of a Gambling Commission investigation into his parliamentary aide, Craig Williams.

Read more: Tory candidate being investigated over alleged election date bet is 'married to Conservative Director of Campaigns'

Read more: Gove says election bets are ‘betrayal of Prime Minister’s trust’ as second Tory candidate investigated by regulator

Michael Gove responds to alleged election bets

Speaking about the allegations during a Question Time leaders' special, Mr Sunak said: "These investigations are ongoing, they are widely confidential, one of them is a criminal investigation that's being conducted by the police."

He said the "integrity of that process should be respected", adding: "What I can tell you is if anyone is found to have broken the rules, not only should they face the full consequences of the law, I will make sure that they are booted out of the Conservative Party."

It comes after Michael Gove said that Tory candidates being investigated is a "betrayal of trust" in the Prime Minister.

Speaking to LBC’s Nick Ferrari at Breakfast, he said that the investigations were "beyond embarrassing" for the Conservative party.

Asked about how the inquiries reflected on the party, Mr Gove said: "It’s beyond embarrassing, it’s wrong - it’s also the principle here.

"It’s not just a betrayal of trust in the Prime Minister, which is very bad, it also means that other punters are losing out because of insider information and that means the system isn’t operating fairly."

He added: “It’s beyond bad to use information like that to secure an advantage.”

A Conservative spokesman said of the inquiry: “We have been contacted by the Gambling Commission about a small number of individuals.

“As the Gambling Commission is an independent body, it wouldn’t be proper to comment further, until any process is concluded.”

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