Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Fifth Report

Annex IV10

File note by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards




Mr Gresty was very distressed. He said that Mrs Gresty has had a letter today from Ms Fernandes' solicitors implying that she has broken confidentiality and that Ms Fernandes is thinking of suing her. He asked what he should do. I said I could not be involved at all in a court case that was being run between two people, even if both those people were involved in an inquiry. However, if he wanted to set out for me in writing, what he had said to me on the telephone, that he felt that this was a threat and that it was undue pressure on Mrs Gresty, he was welcome to do that. I said I was sure the Standards and Privileges Committee would take it very seriously if they felt at any time that anybody, who had in the public interest provided information to an inquiry, was being subjected to threats or pressure because they had acted in that way.

I said to Mr Gresty that of course I couldn't comment on the contents of the solicitor's letter because that what had or had not happened in relation to that matter and was not a matter for me. He said he fully understood that but that he would write to me immediately because he was very concerned about this letter. I asked him how Mrs Gresty's health was and he said that she was doing very well indeed but that this was "a bodyblow".

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