Shelagh Fogarty 1pm - 4pm
Charlie Elphicke: Former MP breaks down in court as he admits cheating on wife
20 July 2020, 20:07
Former Conservative MP Charlie Elphicke broke down in court today as he admitted cheating on his wife, but denied sexually assaulting other women.
The former MP for Dover's voice cracked and he reached for a tissue as he described a number of incidents in court on Monday, including how he hid his affair from his wife, Natalie, because he didn't think his marriage would survive.
He said: "After I was suspended, there were a lot of rumours.
"She challenged me about it. I basically denied it.
"I didn't think I could explain to Natalie - I didn't think my marriage would survive this."
The 49-year-old is currently standing accused of sexually assaulting two women, which he denies.
The first woman claims the former Tory groped her in 2007, when she was in her 30s, and that he chased her around his London home chanting: "I'm a naughty Tory".
In the second complaint, the woman said Elphicke groped her breast in April 2016, and ran his hand up her leg in a later incident the next month.
The woman who Elphicke admitted to having an affair with in 2015 has not been named for legal reasons and is not one of the two complainants.
Speaking in court about the 2016 accusation, Elphicke admitted that he didn't tell police the truth about what happened with the woman, who was a parliamentary worker in her 20s.
He said he didn't know how he would explain to his wife that he had an "emotional attachment" to the other woman.
"I think she would be very hurt and I didn't want that," he said as he confirmed he did not tell police about the feelings either.
"I didn't want to put my marriage in jeopardy, and it would - it would cause chaos."
After his admission, he told he jury: "I should not have lied to the police, I should have just fronted it up.
"I should have told the whole truth rather than half of the truth."
However, he said the groping did not happen.
Responding to the prior complaint from 2007, Elphicke told police he had kissed the woman after she allegedly fed him chocolate and had become "tactile".
He added that he had stopped when she communicated that it wasn't what she wanted, and that the woman accepted his later apology of being "under a misapprehension".
The trial continues.