United Kingdom House of Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle has pledged to call in the police this week over allegations of drug use in the Houses of Parliament.
The move came after The Sunday Times reported that an investigation found traces of cocaine in 11 of the 12 locations tested in the Parliament building.
“The accounts of drug misuse in Parliament given to the Sunday Times are deeply concerning, and I will be raising them as a priority with the Metropolitan Police next week. I expect to see full and effective enforcement of the law,” Hoyle told the media in a statement.
“While Parliament provides extensive support services for any staff or Members who may need help with drug misuse — and I would encourage anyone struggling with such issues to take up such help — for those who choose to flout the law and bring the institution into disrepute the sanctions are serious,” Hoyle further stated.
Those caught in possession of cocaine and other class A drugs face a maximum penalty of up to seven years in prison or an unlimited fine, or both.
According to the report by The Sunday Times, a former member of parliament (MP) added his drug dealer on the parliamentary payroll as a staff member to pay him for drugs.
The same former MP is also rumored to have dealt drugs himself, the report further alleged.
Hoyle’s decision comes as the government is expected on Dec. 6 to pledge £700 million ($926 million) over three years to address drug misuse, which includes putting more emphasis on recovery from addiction.
Tory MP Charles Walker, who chairs the House of Commons Commission, told The Sunday Times that the commission will discuss the issue next week and that sniffer dogs could be brought in to detect drugs.
© Fourth Estate® — All Rights Reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.