Prescott : Sexual Harassment Writ andPolice Confirm Corruption Investigation
Prezza is under more pressure* ahead of becoming the cowboy in charge of the country. As reported here two weeks ago, the Yard has received two formal complaints regarding alleged offences under the 1889-1916 Prevention of Corruption Acts. The complainants are George Bathurst, a Windsor based Tory businessman and the LibDem MP, Norman Baker.
The Met Police’s Press Office is only now confirming that police are studying claims that Prezza could have broken anti-corruption laws by staying on US billionaire Philip Anschutz’s ranch.
Elsewhere the writ from Tricia McDaid, who worked for Prescott when he was the transport shadow has now been filed in the High Court and formally served on Prescott. In papers filed with the court, Ms McDaid says: “I am bringing a claim for damages and my consequential losses as a result of my former employer’s negligent behaviour.”
Some of her allegations:
At a party at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum in 1992. She said: “He started to kiss me. He pulled my dress out, looked down my top and said, ‘What have you got on under there? How come you can’t see anything?’ I was wearing a body stocking as opposed to a bra and knickers… It was embarrassing for him to have done that in front of so many people.”
In 1993, after Labour’s defeat in the 1992 election, McDaid was recruited to work for the party. One of her tasks was to help Prescott in his role as shadow transport secretary. “He was wary from the start because he was aware his behaviour had been inappropriate”
“I just hated it. He said that since I wasn’t a member of the Labour party I must be a spy. He made a fuss because he had harassed me and he didn’t like the fact he was under my brief.”
“He was a boastful, arrogant, nasty pig. He just jumped on you when he felt like it at a party. He had no manners whatsoever. Several times I nearly slapped him in the face.”
He “jumped” on her at parties hoping for sexual favours. “He just leapt on me at one party and his tongue was halfway down my throat.”
She had to wear trouser suits to avoid his wandering hands in the lifts at his Westminster office. She added that she was too afraid to protest at the time for fear of losing her job.
“He started to kiss me. He pulled my dress out, looked down my top and said, ‘What have you got on under there, how come you can’t see anything?’. I was wearing a body stocking as opposed to a bra and knickers. It was so embarrassing for him to have done that in front of so many people… A few weeks later he came to my house. He just turned up on the doorstep at about 12 o’clock at night. I was in East Dulwich and he lived in this seamen’s union flat in Clapham and he just came over. I cooked him dinner and sat there and chatted. He was looking for sexual favours but what are you going to do? It was sexual harassment but I never made a formal complaint. If you complained about sexual harassment, you would have never worked again. We did not have sexual relations. But he used to get really drunk on whisky and would say he had a dossier about people in the Labour party sleeping with one another.”
“Afterwards I worked as a political journalist for the Irish News. I remember him at a party at the Irish embassy. I was surrounded by people but he kissed me on the lips and started to put his tongue down my throat. I laid into him. I got quite aggressive and there was a scene. He accused me of being a Tory spy.”
She said he also turned up at her house uninvited at night looking for “sexual favours”.
“It was all about sex. That’s all it was ever about with him. He saw women as wee girls and would just grab their arses. He would do it to anybody in a skirt. I started wearing trouser suits so I wouldn’t get groped. We would have meetings in his office and he would put his hand up his secretary’s skirt while everybody was there.”
Tricia McDaid endured a campaign of harassment for two years, afraid to complain for fear she would be sacked.