Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Johnson 'affair' bodyguard sacked

Alan Johnson's ex-police bodyguard has been sacked after a probe into an alleged affair with the former home secretary's wife
Laura Johnson, the wife of former shadow chancellor Alan Johnson

Alan Johnson's ex-police bodyguard has been sacked by Scotland Yard after an investigation into an alleged affair with the former home secretary's wife.

Close protection officer Pc Paul Rice was dismissed without notice as police chiefs condemned him for damaging the reputation of the force.

Mr Johnson quit as shadow chancellor as allegations surrounding the affair became public, forcing Labour leader Ed Miliband to reshuffle his top team less than four months into the job.

Mr Rice, 45, is thought to have worked for Theresa May since she took over at the Home Office last May. He lost his job at the conclusion of his misconduct hearing.

Sources confirmed the hearing also heard evidence surrounding an alleged relationship with a 50-year-old woman in the politician's Hull constituency.

Commander Peter Spindler, in charge of the Directorate of Professional Standards (DPS), said: "The behaviour displayed by the officer was unacceptable and as such the board has rightly sanctioned him for the abuse of his position of trust.

"He has damaged the reputation of the MPS and the specialist discipline in which he worked. By doing so he breached the high professional standards expected by the public and his colleagues."

Mr Johnson has refused to elaborate on the "personal reasons" for his shock resignation, saying only that he was finding it "difficult to cope" with "personal issues in my private life".

He has been married to Laura, his second wife, for almost 20 years. The couple have a 10-year-old son.

He has been replaced as shadow chancellor by Ed Balls who was overlooked for the post last October after publicly disagreeing with Mr Miliband over economic policy during the Labour leadership campaign.

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