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First 20 fines to be handed out by Met Police over Downing Street partygate scandal

The prime minister came under intense pressure to quit at the start of the year due to the scandal..

The Met Police has confirmed the first 20 fines will be handed out over the Westminster partygate scandal.

ACRO criminal records office are likely to issue fixed penalty notices for lockdown-busting parties that took place in 2020 and 2021 while the nation stayed at home.

Boris Johnson is being investigated by the force for attending Downing Street gatherings – including a garden party – but it’s understood he is not included in the first wave of fines.

The prime minister came under intense pressure to quit at the start of the year due to the scandal.

Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross was among those who called for him to go after the damaging revelations emerged.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross.

His demands sparked a major civil war within the Conservative Party with his Holyrood MSPs also saying Mr Johnson should step down.

But Mr Ross has walked back on his resignation calls in recent weeks due to the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It’s been suggested the initial 20 partygate fines will be related to the most straightforward cases.

SNP Westminster deputy chief Kirsten Oswald said: “The confirmation by the Metropolitan Police that the law was broken and initial fines have been issued expose Boris Johnson’s remarks that no parties were held or that the rules were followed as being flatly untrue.

‘Damning development’

“This damning development once again highlights the scale of rule-breaking at the heart of Boris Johnson’s corrupt government.

“While the public were following the rules imposed upon us all and making difficult sacrifices to protect each other, Boris Johnson and his Tory colleagues were breaking them without a care.

“Boris Johnson should have resigned a long time ago over the boozy rule-breaking parties, but his ego and lack of dignity led him to desperately cling on.”

Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner claimed the war in Ukraine should not be used as an excuse to save the Tory leader.

She said: “That doesn’t negate the Prime Minister from lying to the British public and not following his own rules.

“If he’s found to have broken them then I don’t believe his position is tenable.”

Labour leader Keir Starmer and SNP Westminster chief Ian Blackford had both hinted recently that Boris Johnson should remain in his post during the Ukraine crisis despite their previous calls for him to go.

This morning government education minister Will Quince said the parties which broke lockdown “should not have happened”.

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