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No more fines for Boris Johnson as UK police’s lockdown inquiry is shut


Boris Johnson speaks at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday. Photo: PA Wire

Boris Johnson speaks at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday. Photo: PA Wire

Boris Johnson speaks at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday. Photo: PA Wire

Boris Johnson faces no further action over lockdown breaches, Downing Street said yesterday, after the Metropolitan Police concluded its Partygate investigation with a total of 126 fines.

Scotland Yard said it had issued fixed-penalty notices (FPNs) to 83 people at events in Downing Street and across Whitehall spanning eight separate days.

No 10 said the UK prime minister was “pleased” the investigation had concluded and that officers had told Mr Johnson he would not receive a second fine, having received one for the event on his 56th birthday.

The conclusion of Operation Hillman into breaches spanning 11 months paves the way for the potentially damaging publication of senior civil servant Sue Gray’s inquiry.

It is understood the prime minister’s wife Carrie Johnson has also been told she faces no further action while UK chancellor Rishi Sunak was also yet to receive another fine, after both were fined over Mr Johnson’s birthday gathering in June 2020.

The prime minister’s official spokesman said: “The Met has confirmed that they are taking no further action with regards to the prime minister.”

Conservative former chief whip Mark Harper joined Labour and the Liberal Democrats in calling for Ms Gray’s report to be published swiftly.

No 10 said it will publish the report “as soon as possible”, with officials expecting Ms Gray is most likely to hand it over next week.

Opposition leader Keir Starmer repeated his call for Mr Johnson to resign, for setting a culture of “industrial scale law-breaking” in No 10.

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He told reporters in Leeds: “What I want to see now is the full Sue Gray report published, there’s no further hiding places for the prime minister on that.”

Downing Street said Mr Johnson will “talk in more detail” about the scandal after the report is published.

The prime minister’s spokesman said the intention is to publish it “as received, as much as possible”, raising the possibility images of parties could emerge if included by the civil servant.

“The prime minister is pleased the investigation has concluded and would like to thank the police for their work in bringing this investigation to completion,” the spokesman said.

“The prime minister will update parliament in the first instance once Sue Gray’s report is published, that’s when he’ll talk in more detail.”

Cabinet secretary Simon Case is yet to receive the same assurance as Mr and Mrs Johnson that he faces no further action, Downing Street said.

The Met’s acting deputy commissioner Helen Ball said it was possible people will receive fines in the next 48 hours. And she said 28 people had received between two and five fines.

“We have no objections at all to Sue Gray publishing her report and she will make her decisions now as to the next steps she wants to take, I’m sure,” she added.

Scotland Yard said 48 women received a total of 73 FPNs, while 35 men received a total of 53.

Scotland Yard declined to identify anyone involved in the investigation but disclosed that it cost in the region of £460,000.

A team of 12 detectives examined 345 documents, including emails, door logs, diary entries, witness statements and 204 questionnaires.

They also examined 510 photographs and CCTV images.

There were no interviews under caution, with officers instead relying on answers to questionnaires.

Ms Ball added: “This investigation is now complete.”

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