Allegations that a Tory candidate once sexually assaulted a teenager were “not taken very seriously” by the party’s press office, a court heard.
Imran Ahmad Khan, 48, allegedly forced the 15-year-old to drink gin and tonic before dragging him upstairs and asking him to watch porn before groping him in a bunk bed after a party in January 2008.
The alleged victim’s parents broke down in tears as they told Southwark Crown Court on Thursday how their son was left “inconsolable” and “shaking” after the incident at a Staffordshire home.
A police report was made at the time but the boy did not want to file a formal complaint, the jury heard.
However, he said “it all came back” after finding out Khan was standing to become MP for Wakefield in West Yorkshire in the 2019 general election.
Days before the vote, the alleged victim said he contacted the Conservative Party press office to inform them of his allegations against Khan.
“I wasn’t taken very seriously,” he said.
“I explained that Imran Khan was a candidate for MP and he was kind of rushed through.
“I explained that and said ‘He sexually abused me when I was a kid, when I was 15’.”
He said the woman he spoke to looked ‘shocked’ and passed it on to someone else who sounded more ‘stern’ and asked if he had ‘evidence “.
“I said ‘Yeah, there’s a police report’ and she said ‘Well…’ and that was it.
“I said ‘I’m going to the police’, and she said ‘Well, you do that’.”
A few days later, Khan was elected as a Conservative MP in the so-called ‘Red Wall’ which had been the heartland of Labor in the Midlands and the North of England.
Khan was suspended from the Conservative Party but remains the MP for Wakefield.
The alleged victim, who said he voted for Labour, insisted his complaint was ‘not politically motivated’.
“If it was, I would have done it before the general election,” he added.
Khan, who was 34 at the time, denies a single charge of sexual assault relating to the alleged incident. He allegedly touched the boy’s feet and legs and came “a hair’s breadth” from his private parts.
The complainant’s father wept on the witness stand as he recounted how “inconsolable” his son was after the alleged attack.
“He was in shock, he was shaking, crying and it felt like hours before I uttered the words ‘I was mugged,'” he said.
His mother said Khan had appeared to be a “very charming man” who she believed to be “foreign royalty”. She described her son as an “absolutely happy boy” whom she had tried to raise into an “Enid Blyton existence”.
“He was a young child, he was a boy. He wasn’t a man, and I think that’s what upset me the most about all of this.
“He was a kid when he came up that night and he suddenly had to deal with what he had to deal with.”
Weeping, she added: “I will never forget this, as long as I live: (My son) just shakes and shakes and shakes.
“I couldn’t figure it out. I just grabbed him and tried to calm him down and keep him from shaking.
“He was talking in a low voice and just saying ‘He was trying to smell me, he was trying to smell me’.”
Khan, who is gay and Muslim, said he only touched the Catholic teenager’s elbow when he “became extremely upset” after talking about his confused sexuality.
The MP’s lawyer suggested the complainant gave three “contradictory” accounts to police in 2008, 2019 and 2021.
She accused the man, who trained as an actor, of “literally making up” and reliving a “drama that you are convinced of in your own mind”.
But the man insists he is telling the truth, telling the court: ‘I am not a liar’.
The trial continues.
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