Boris Johnson will not be given one of 20 penalty notices the Metropolitan Police will hand out today over partygate, Number 10 has said.
Johnson’s official spokesman told journalists that “we’ve said we will update if” the Prime Minister is found to have broken the law during the Met’s investigation.
The Met announced today that 20 penalty notices will be given out to Downing Street staff that have been caught up in the scandal, which saw more than a dozen alleged illegal parties take place in Downing Street and Whitehall during times of strict Covid restrictions.
The Prime Minister was one of 100 people who were asked by the Met to fill in questionnaires as a part of the investigation.
Johnson’s spokesman said any staff who were given penalty notices will not be required to disclose this to senior Downing Street management and will not be named publicly.
This is despite the civil service code saying staff must “comply with the law and uphold the administration of justice”.
However, Downing Street has committed to saying if the Prime Minister is found to have broken the law.
Speaking about their investigation today, a Met Police statement said: “The investigation into allegations of breaches of COVID-19 regulations in Whitehall and Downing Street has now progressed to the point where the first referrals for fixed penalty notices (FPN) will be made to ACRO Criminal Records Office.
“We will today initially begin to refer 20 fixed penalty notices to be issued for breaches of Covid-19 regulations.
“The ACRO Criminal Records Office will then be responsible for issuing the FPNs to the individual following the referrals from the MPS [Metropolitan Police Service].”
Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner said “Boris Johnson’s Downing Street has been found guilty of breaking the law”.
“The culture is set from the top,” she said.
“The buck stops with the Prime Minister, who spent months lying to the British public, which is why he’s got to go.
“This has been a slap in the face of the millions of people who made huge sacrifices.”