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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Theresa May's deputy resigns over scandal

Damian Green, UK prime minister Theresa May's deputy, resigns from cabinet after investigation finds he breached UK ministerial code.

The First Secretary of State quit after he was found to have made "inaccurate and misleading" statements about what he knew about claims pornography had been found on a computer in his Commons office in 2008.

A detective had examined the senior politician’s computer and said he found thousands of pornographic images.

Neil Lewis, a retired Scotland Yard officer, said he had examined Mr Green’s computer during a 2008 inquiry into government leaks, which contained thousands of thumbnail images of legal pornography.

“The shocking thing as I was viewing it, I noticed a lot of pornography – thumbnails, which indicated web browsing. There was a lot of them. I was surprised to see that on a parliament computer. I had to take a step back because I wasn’t expecting that,” Mr Lewis, who retired in 2014, told the BBC.

An official report by the Cabinet Office found that statements he had made about being unaware pornographic material had been found on his computer were "inaccurate and misleading" and as such fell short of the ministerial code.

In his resignation letter, Mr Green apologised for his actions. Mrs May expressed "deep regret" at his departure.

Read more: Future of Theresa May’s deputy Damian Green in doubt over internet history claims

Mr Green, who was the PM's deputy, had been under investigation regarding allegations of inappropriate conduct.

Mr Green is already being investigated by the Cabinet Office over allegations that he made inappropriate advances towards a political activist.

He denied suggestions that he made unwanted advances to a female journalist, Kate Maltby, in 2015.

The report also found that although there were "competing and contradictory accounts of what were private meetings" between himself and Ms Maltby, "the investigation found Ms Maltby's account to be plausible".

The former UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon resigned after accusations of sexual harassment earlier this year in the wake of the #Metoo movement. The hashtag was a rallying point for women from all backgrounds to share incidents of sexual harassment following the startling revelations of movie producer Harvey Weinstein's behaviour.

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