Met Police confirms it is now investigating Downing Street parties

Met Police confirms it is now investigating Downing Street parties

The Metropolitan Police has announced that it has launched an investigation into various parties held at Downing Street in contravention of Covid-19 regulations.

Commissioner Cressida Dick made the announcement at a press conference in central London today, and said her force had launched the investigation as a result of information provided by the Cabinet Office.

The Met had asked the Cabinet Office for such information.

"As a result, firstly of the information provided by the Cabinet Office inquiry team, and secondly, my officers' own assessment, I can confirm that the Met is now investigating a number of events that took place at Downing Street and Whitehall in the last two years in relation to potential breaches of Covid-19 regulations," Dick said at the London Assembly’s Police and Crime Committee.

She said the investigation was launched after the inquiry passed a threshold, but also noted how other events which were investigated that appear to have taken place did not meet the threshold for criminal investigation "on the available information".

"Throughout the pandemic the Met has sought to take a proportionate approach," she continued. "I should stress that the fact that we are now investigation does not, of course, mean that fixed penalty notices will be issued in every instance and to every person involved."

She said a "running commentary" on this investigations will not be given, but assured that updates will be provided at significant points.

The Sue Gray report into the parties, which was set to be published this week, is now likely to be delayed.

A Cabinet Office spokesperson said work would continue on the inquiry.

"The investigation being carried out by Sue Gray is continuing,” they said. "There is in ongoing contact with the Metropolitan police service."