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MP Says UK Asylum Seeker Suspected of Raping Boy Skipped Bail and Vanished

A Conservative MP has raised in Parliament the case of an asylum seeker who has gone missing from a hotel in his constituency after being released on police bail following his arrest and questioning over the rape of a boy in a hotel in London.

Greg Smith, the MP for Buckingham, raised the case in the House of Commons on Wednesday and it was later taken up by Labour MP Stella Creasy, whose constituency includes the hotel in which the offence allegedly took place.

Smith said: “Buckinghamshire Council learned third-hand from a London borough just this morning that an asylum seeker who is under investigation for a very serious offence was transferred to the asylum hotel in Buckingham by the Metropolitan Police but was not escorted into the premises and has since gone missing.”

He claimed officers from the Metropolitan Police took the 39-year-old man to the hotel but did not escort him inside the building.

Smith said: “That process is wholly unacceptable,” and he asked if “everything possible is being done to apprehend that individual and ensure that until that investigation is completed they are in secured accommodation?”

Immigration Minister Promises to Raise Matter With Police

Immigration minister Robert Jenrick replied, “That does sound like a very concerning incident, and he has my assurance that I will raise that with the Home Office and indeed with the police and will report back to him.”

The Metropolitan Police confirmed to the PA news agency that a man had been arrested after an allegation of rape was made at a hotel in the London Borough of Waltham Forest on Oct. 5.

The police said he was released on bail pending further inquiries and must return to a London police station in early January.

Creasy, who represents Walthamstow, later made a point of order in the Commons, saying: “The immigration minister responded to a concern raised by the member for Buckinghamshire … regarding the absconsion of a gentleman who it subsequently… from press reports has been accused of a very serious assault in my constituency of a young refugee child.”

The shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper chipped in: “The reports of the case are very serious and do raise some questions about how the Home Office has handled this case. We don’t know the full circumstances at the moment, but could you use your good offices to ensure that the immigration minister does update us and does fully investigate this case?”

Security minister Tom Tugendhat responded, “I’m sure I speak for the immigration minister and policing minister to say that they will both look into it very carefully, and I’m sure they will return to answer these questions.”

Illegal immigrants who enter Britain—including 42,000 who have crossed the English Channel this year in small boats—and then claim asylum are currently being housed in hotels across the country. Under English law they cannot be detained unless they have been charged with a criminal offence.

A Metropolitan Police spokesman told PA: “Police were called on Wednesday, October 5 to a report of a rape at a hotel in Waltham Forest. Officers attended and spoke to the victim, a boy in his teens, and his family. Specialist support is being provided to them. A 39-year-old man was arrested at the scene and taken into custody.”

“He is currently on bail pending further enquiries and must return to the police station on a date in early January. His accommodation status in the interim period is a matter for the Home Office, not the police,” the spokesman added.

PA Media contributed to this report.

Chris Summers


Chris Summers is a UK-based journalist covering a wide range of national stories, with a particular interest in crime, policing and the law.

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