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Labour frontbencher denies slapping party member’s buttocks

Transport role: Labour’s Karl Turner PIC: PA

A LABOUR frontbencher has been accused of slapping a woman’s buttocks and making offensive remarks in the latest bullying row to hit the party.

Karl Turner is accused of behaving inappropriately towards a party member in his constituency office in 2015 and later saying: ‘I couldn’t help myself.’

He is also said to have told the woman, who had undergone a double mastectomy: ‘You shouldn’t have got rid of your real t**s because they were great. The ones you’ve got now are nice enough.’

Mr Turner, who serves as a shadow transport minister, denied the claims reported by the Financial Times. The Hull East MP said last night: ‘I strongly reject any suggestion that I behaved inappropriately or in a misogynistic manner.’

Labour said it takes such allegations seriously and anyone with a complaint should come forward so it can be ‘fully investigated’.

Mr Turner was made shadow attorney general after Jeremy Corbyn became Labour leader in 2015 but resigned following the EU referendum in 2016. He returned as a whip a few months later before becoming shadow minister for shipping, aviation and road safety after last year’s General Election.

Married to solicitor Leanne, he took their then ten-month-old daughter Stella-Mae into the Commons for a crucial Brexit vote in February last year.

Yesterday’s allegations came hours after Labour MP Debbie Abrahams (pictured) was asked to step aside from her role as shadow work and pensions secretary while claims that she bullied members of her team are investigated.

She denied any wrongdoing and said she had been forced out by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s office.

Other Labour MPs under investigation include Luton North representative Kelvin Hopkins, suspended last November over accusations of sexual misconduct, which he denies. Bury South MP Ivan Lewis, who denies sexually harassing a 19-year-old woman, has also been suspended.