MP Nigel Evans has told Parliament he's stepping down from his role as Deputy Speaker as he fights to clear his name from charges of sexual assault.
He resigned his post in an emotional speech in the House today but said he would remain as an independent MP for the Ribble Valley.
Nigel Evans told MPs he decided to step down from his position as Deputy Commons Speaker "after careful consideration".
Speaking in the House of Commons, Mr Evans said: "I hope you will bear with me while I make this statement, it's been a few years since I made a speech in this chamber and I'm sad to say this is the speech.
"As many of you will know following recent allegations, I was charged with alleged offences yesterday. I now have the opportunity to robustly defend my innocence and seek acquittal.
"I have therefore decided the best course of action is for me to return to the backbenches and this is a decision I have made myself after careful consideration."
Nigel Evans, who resigned as House of Commons Deputy Speaker after being told he faces sex charges, has told MPs he had been "left in a land of limbo" by the allegations.
Nigel Evans has told MPs he will "robustly defend my innocence and seek acquittal."
Mr Evans, who has resigned his position as Deputy Speaker, told the House of Commons he will not seek to regain the Conservative whip and will therefore sit as an Independent MP.
Commons Speaker John Bercow has told the House he has received a letter of resignation from Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans with "sadness".
He added: "I wish to thank Nigel for his three years of service as deputy speaker."
Today it emerged Evans will be charged with a series of sex offences against seven men. But he has insisted he is innocent, vowing: "my innocence will be demonstrated".
Former Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans is due to make a personal statement in the House of Commons at 12.30pm after Prime Minister's Questions.
Nigel Evans has resigned from his role as Deputy Speaker for the House of Commons after he was charged with a string of sexual offences.
The Crown Prosecution Service said there was "sufficient evidence" and that it is in the "public interest to charge Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans with a number of sexual offences.
The Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer QC, said:
Following an investigation by Lancashire police, the Crown Prosecution Service has received a file of evidence in the case of Mr Nigel Evans MP which concerns allegations of a sexual nature.
After careful consideration, we have concluded that there is sufficient evidence and that it is in the public interest to prosecute Mr Evans. Lancashire Constabulary has therefore been authorised to charge two counts of indecent assault, five counts of sexual assault and one count of rape relating to a total of seven alleged victims.
House of Commons Deputy Speaker Nigel Evans will be charged with a string of offences including sexual assault and rape, the Crown Prosecution said tonight.
Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans has been arrested on suspicion of further sexual offences. The Tory MP and deputy speaker of the House of Common had previously been arrested by Lancashire Police on suspicion of rape, sexual assault and three indecent assaults.