Plebgate row deepens
The account of Andrew Mitchell’s tirade at policemen in Downing Street has been cast into doubt today after CCTV pictures of the incident were released for the first time.
There have been further questions raised after a police officer, making no mention of his job, was revealed to have contacted deputy chief whip John Randall with a version of events strongly resembling an alleged leaked police log.
Mr Randall’s constituent emailed the MP and claimed to have been an eye witness to events, but he has since told Channel 4 News he was not present.
Downing Street tonight said the allegations of fabricated evidence were "exceptionally serious".
Channel 4 has also broadcast CCTV footage, which seems to contradict the leaked police log that claims the incident took place with several members of the public present.
There is also doubt about whether Mr Mitchell, who resigned as Chief Whip after the scandal, would have had time to have said everything attributed to him during the altercation.
Mr Mitchell said he had been "stitched-up", and that the saga had shaken his confidence in the police.
"There were three phrases above all which were hung around my neck for the following 28 days, every day in the press, which were used to destroy my political career and were used to toxify the Conservative party… They are completely untrue, I never said phrases like that at all, I would never call someone an effing pleb. Anyone who knows me well would know that it is absolutely not in me to use phrases like that."
Earlier the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Bernard Hogan-Howe, said he was standing by the officers involved in the 'plebgate' saga, saying there was "more to this than meets the eye". The Independent Police Complaints Commission is already investigating the claims from the officer who emailed Mr Randall.