A Conservative MP has been arrested after police received allegations of rape, sexual assault and coercive control.

A woman in her 20s told police that she had been assaulted and forced to have sex, according to a report in the Sunday Times. The woman was a former parliamentary employee. The news agency Reuters says the alleged perpetrator, who has not been named, is a former minister.

The Metropolitan police said that on Friday it received allegations relating to four separate incidents between July 2019 and January 2020. “A man in his 50s was arrested on Saturday 1 August on suspicion of rape and is currently in custody in an east London police station,” a statement said.

The abuse allegedly took place during a relationship, the Sunday Times reported.

The paper said the allegations were raised with Conservative chief whip Mark Spencer, and the complainant also spoke to him, but no action was taken. The PA news agency understands Spencer advised her to make a formal complaint to the authorities who would be able to investigate the claims.

Police did not reveal any further details about the arrested man’s identity or occupation.

A Conservative party spokesman said: “We take all allegations of this nature extremely seriously. As this matter is now in the hands of the police, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

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