Imran Ahmed Khan: British MP convicted of sexual assault

Jury finds former UN counter-terrorism expert guilty of assaulting a child

British MP for Wakefield Imran Ahmad Khan has been found guilty of sexual assault. EPA
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

A British politician has been found guilty of sexually assaulting a 15-year-old boy after forcing him to drink alcohol at a party 14 years ago.

Imran Ahmad Khan, 48, was elected as Member of Parliament for Wakefield in West Yorkshire, in the UK general election in December 2019.

A jury at Southwark Crown Court in London on Monday unanimously found him guilty of sexual assault after a trial.

The victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, first made an allegation against Khan to the ruling Conservative Party, of which he was a member, days before he was elected but told the court he was not "taken very seriously".

He made a complaint to police days after Khan won the former Labour Party seat.

The court heard how Khan, a counter-terrorism expert, forced the teenager to drink gin and tonic and dragged him upstairs before the attack at a house in Staffordshire in January 2008.

The victim, now 29, told a jury he was left feeling “scared, vulnerable, numb, shocked and surprised”.

He ran to his parents and a police report was made at the time, but no further action was taken because the youngster did not want to make a formal complaint.

But he told jurors “it all came flooding back” when he learnt Khan was standing in the December 2019 election.

The politician was parachuted into the constituency in a skydiving stunt after he was selected to replace Antony Calvert weeks before the poll.

Days before the vote, the victim said he had contacted the Conservative Party press office, to tell them what Khan had done to him. “I wasn’t taken very seriously,” he said.

Khan, who was sent a questionnaire by Staffordshire Police rather than being interviewed under caution at a station because of “Covid protocols in place at the time”, had denied sexual assault.

He has been suspended by the Conservative Party amid the police investigation.

Mr Justice Baker said he will sentence Khan at a date to be fixed.

He will be thrown out of the House of Commons if he is sentenced to more than a year in jail, or could be subject to a petition to oust him in the recall process.

“You have been convicted by a jury of this offence of sexual assault and you will have to be sentenced in due course," the judge told him.

“I make it clear that all sentencing options, including immediate custody, are being considered by the court.”

During legal argument, prosecutor Sean Larkin QC said it was a “mere technicality” that Khan had not been charged with a second sexual assault of a man at a guesthouse in Pakistan, where the politician was working on a UK Foreign Office-funded project.

The man told jurors he reported the November 2010 incident to the British High Commission and the Foreign Office but did not want to go to police in Pakistan because of Khan’s “powerful connections” in the military and government.

He came forward as a witness after hearing Khan, who denies the incident, had been charged with sexual assault following the MP’s failed bid to prevent the press from reporting his name.

The Wakefield-born Muslim politician has spent decades working for the British government and the UN to curb the threat of ISIS and other terrorist organisations.

His career took him to war-torn countries around the world, including Afghanistan and Syria.

The counter-terrorism programmes he worked on have helped to bring peace and democracy to impoverished areas.

Before entering Parliament, Khan worked for the UN as a special assistant for political affairs in Mogadishu, Somalia.

Updated: April 12, 2022, 3:54 AM
EDITOR'S PICKS
NEWSLETTERS
MORE FROM THE NATIONAL