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No police action on Rennard claims
Former Liberal Democrat chief executive Lord Rennard will face no further police action over claims that he sexually harassed women party activists.
Scotland Yard did not name the peer but said tonight that there was insufficient evidence to support a prosecution against a 52-year-old man.
He was accused of behaving inappropriately towards a number of women in the party but repeatedly denied any wrongdoing.
The force said: " Following reports in the media in February, officers from the Specialist Crime and Operations Command launched an investigation into allegations of sexual touching.
"Various inquiries were conducted - including meeting with officials from the Liberal Democrat party - and a number of individuals were spoken to as part of the investigation.
"Those inquiries have now concluded that there is insufficient evidence to support a prosecution; a decision which has been made by police."
Officers had "early investigative consultation" with the Crown Prosecution Service, but did not refer the case for full advice to decide what to do, the force said.
Lord Rennard was interviewed under caution in June after he voluntarily went to a police station in south London.
Scotland Yard said it was agreed from the beginning that any internal misconduct issues would be referred back to the Lib Dems.
A Liberal Democrat spokesman said : " The decision by the police not to prosecute Lord Rennard with a criminal offence means that the party's disciplinary process, led by Alistair Webster QC, can now resume.
"We consider the allegations made against Lord Rennard, which he strenuously denies, to be extremely serious and we can now continue with our internal inquiry into these allegations.
"We would encourage anyone who has information that could be relevant to the inquiry to get in touch through our whistle-blower hotline, run by Public Concern at Work, on 020 7404 6609."
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and two other Lib Dem ministers - Danny Alexander and Jo Swinson - were sharply criticised in a review into the party's handling of the complaints made against Lord Rennard.
Businesswoman Helena Morrissey, who conducted the inquiry, said that there should have been a formal investigation launched when his alleged victims first came forward.
In February it emerged that a number of woman activists and party workers had made allegations of unwanted advances, but when they reported the claims little action was taken.