Ross England wants to quit as the Conservative assembly election candidate for the Vale of Glamorgan, BBC Wales has been told.

Mr England was suspended as a party member and candidate after it emerged his conduct as a witness led to the collapse of a rape trial.

The party said a “thorough investigation” will be concluded soon.

But local Conservative sources have told BBC Wales Mr England will stand down regardless of the outcome.

The aide was giving evidence in a rape trial in April 2018 when he made claims about the victim’s sexual history, which the complainant denied.

A judge accused him of sabotaging the trial.

The evidence was not permissible in court, although Mr England denies knowing this when he gave evidence.

Mr England was suspended by the Welsh Conservatives 12 weeks ago.

Spencer Russell Downe, deputy chair of the Vale of Glamorgan Conservative Association, said it had been left “in limbo” because a decision on whether Mr England would remain as the candidate has not yet been taken.

Since then, three separate grassroots Tory sources have told BBC Wales that Mr England does not intend to continue as the candidate.

One of them said: “Ross is obviously fighting to clear his name and there’s a process for all these things – but he is absolutely adamant that he’s done nothing wrong.

“In any case, he has told us that he is going to stand down as a candidate and there will therefore be a process in due course for selecting a new candidate.”

Lord Davies, Welsh Conservative chairman, declined to comment.


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