Lord Brittan: Police probe 'ongoing' despite peer's death

The Metropolitan Police has confirmed it will continue to review an historical allegation of rape against former Home Secretary Lord Brittan, despite the peer's death aged 75.

The Conservative peer died at his London home following a long battle with cancer, his family said.

He was recently caught up in a row over allegations that he failed to act on evidence of child abuse by senior figures in Westminster in the 1980s.

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Met Police confirms review into Lord Brittan rape claim

The Metropolitan Police has confirmed a review of an alleged rape case against Lord Brittan "remains ongoing" despite his death on Thursday.

A historical rape allegation was made against Lord Brittan in 2012. Credit: PA wire

In a statement the Met Police said:

"In late 2012, a woman alleged to the Metropolitan Police Service that she was raped by a man in 1967 at an address in London.

The woman was over the age of 18 at the time of the incident.

An investigation was commenced by officers from the Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command.

Advice was sought from the CPS, and both police and the CPS agreed at that time that there was insufficient evidence to proceed.

A subsequent review of the case was carried out and further lines of inquiry were conducted.

This included in June 2014, a man aged in his 70s being interviewed under caution by appointment at a central London location in connection with the allegation. He was not arrested.

After further consultation with the CPS, it was confirmed that those additional inquiries had not strengthened the original evidence; but police have subsequently been carrying out a further review of the case which remains ongoing."

Questions endure over Lord Brittain's knowledge of abuse dossier

Lord Brittan, a leading conservative politician of his day, has died of cancer aged 75.

More recently, he was back in the public eye after being accused of not investigating a child sex ring.

There have been many warm words from political friends of the Thatcher era.

But from others, questions of a different kind.

As Home Secretary back then: what did he know about claims of child sex abuse at the heart of the British establishment?

ITV News UK Editor Rohit Kachroo reports:


'Cloud of suspicion' hung over Lord Brittan's final days

Former Home Secretary Lord Brittan returned to the public eye in July last year when questions rose over his handling of a dossier handed to him as home secretary in 1983 by Tory MP Geoffrey Dickens.

The dossier alleged an VIP ring of paedophiles was operating in the heart of the British establishment.

ITV News Correspondent Paul Davies reports:

Prime Minister leads tributes to Lord Brittan

Former Home Secretary Lord Brittan has died aged 75 following a battle with cancer.

The Prime Minister led the many tributes tonight, and praised his long public service.

ITV News Political Correspondent Romily Weeks reports:

Theresa May sends condolences to Lord Brittan's family

The Home Secretary has joined fellow senior Conservatives in sending her condolences to the family of Lord Brittan, who has died aged 75.

In a statement released by the Home Office, Theresa May said:

I was sorry to learn of the sad death of the former Home Secretary, Lord Brittan, and send my condolences to his family at this difficult time.

– Home Secretary Theresa May

Allegations against Lord Brittan 'completely unproven'

Former Conservative leader Michael Howard said allegations that "dogged" Lord Brittan before his death are "completely unsubstantiated".

Howard told ITV News that the former home secretary "should be remembered as a great servant of our country".

Mr Howard said he had fond memories of his "warm, witty and amusing friend", adding that he would be "greatly missed".


Clegg hails Brittan as 'one of most intelligent figures'

Nick Clegg has paid tribute to Lord Brittan following his death aged 75, describing the former Home Secretary as "one of the most intelligent figures in modern British public life".

Leon Brittan passed away last night after a long battle with cancer. Credit: PA Wire

"Leon was one of the most intelligent figures in modern British public life," the Deputy Prime Minister said.

"When I worked for Leon in Brussels almost 20 years ago, his forensic understanding of detailed issues combined with his passionate belief in internationalism was evident to everyone.

"His courage in sticking up for his pro-European views, despite huge pressure to the contrary, never wavered.

"His intellectual curiosity about politics; the arts; history; and literature was encyclopedic. Even as illness affected him badly in recent years, he kept up his lifelong habit of reading a constant flow of books on a huge range of subjects.

"My heart goes out to Diana Brittan and Leon's family at this very sad time."

Sir Peter Bottomley sure Brittan accusations will be 'proved false'

Conservative Party MP Sir Peter Bottomley has said that he is sure that any accusations surrounding Lord Brittan will be proved false.

Speaking to ITV News, he said: "Too many people have gone around smearing good people."

Sir Peter Bottomley, a fellow former Conservative minister, also said that Lord Brittan's dedication to public service had been "an inspiration".

"He showed that intelligence and commitment could be of value to the country," said Sir Peter.

PM: Lord Brittan was 'dedicated and fiercely intelligent'

File photo dated 19/12/1985 of then-Secretary of State for Trade and Industry Leon Brittan. Credit: PA wire

Prime Minister David Cameron has called Lord Brittan a "dedicated and fiercely intelligent public servant in his tribute to the Tory peer who has died aged 75 after a long fight with cancer.

Leon Brittan was a dedicated and fiercely intelligent public servant.

As a central figure in Margaret Thatcher’s government, he helped her transform our country for the better by giving distinguished service as Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Home Secretary, and Secretary of State for Trade and Industry.

He went on to play a leading role at the European Commission where he did so much to promote free trade in Europe and across the world.

More recently, he made an active contribution to the House of Lords.

My thoughts are with Leon’s family and friends at this sad time for them.”

– Prime Minister David Cameron

Lord Brittan was a senior member of Margaret Thatcher's Cabinet until forced to resign over the Westland Helicopters affair, and he later spent a decade in Brussels as one of the UK's European Commissioners.

Euro Commission president hails Brittan as 'inspiring leader'

The European Commission president has described Lord Brittan as an "inspiring leader" who helped shape the European Union.

It is with deep regret that I learned of Leon Brittan's passing.

During his 10 years of service to the European Commission he held key posts on competition, trade, financial services and external relations policies.

He demonstrated his total mastery of complex issues and was a strong advocate for the single market. A man of strong beliefs, a convinced European, he was skilful in translating political principles into action.

In a globalising world, he saw the importance of keeping the European continent open to the wider world. That is what he believed in, fought for and achieved.

In all his dealings, he was a man of great competence and conviction. Many who worked with him here remember him as an articulate, astute and loyal member of the Delors and Santer Commissions and as an inspiring leader.

We in the European Commission, and I personally, will miss the man who made an important contribution to making the EU what it is today and a dear friend for many."

– Jean-Claude Juncker
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