Gold Report on the Aidan Burley allegations: Summary of Findings Conclusions on Allegations Relating to the Stag Party The

Nazi Theme As best man, Mr Burley organised the stag party for his friend the groom, Mark Fornier, and the other 12 attendees. The party consisted of a four day ski trip to Val Thoren. The attendees decided collecti ely that Mr Fornier should !ear a costume on the final night and that it should be an "" costume. As best man, Mr Burley purchased the costume alongside the flights and other costs associated !ith the trip on behalf of the other attendees. Mr Burley argued strongly that the choice of costume !as inspired by the British comic association !ith aspects of the !ar. #e categorically denies that there !as any political moti ation !hatsoe er. #e argued that the purchase and !earing of the $a%i costume is legal in the &' and that he !as una!are that !earing the costume could be an offence in France. #e regrets the offence caused by the !earing of the costume. (e accept this account of e ents. )n particular, !e accept that there !as no political moti ation. #o!e er, !e conclude that as a Member of *arliament, Mr Burley should ha e considered his actions much more carefully. #e should not ha e participated in a party that in ol ed !earing an "" costume and should ha e been much more a!are of the offence that it !ould cause. By doing so, he demonstrated considerable nai ety, !hich brought his +udgment into ,uestion. The Toast As the end of the meal on the final night the groom-s brother, .ohn Fornier, raised a $a%i/ themed toast. Mr Burley argued that Mr Fornier had been drinking all day, and !as clearly drunk. Mr Burley said he found the toast deeply offensi e and that he did not participate in the toast and left the dinner immediately after!ards. (e accept !hat Mr Burley says, that he found the toast offensi e and that he left immediately after!ards, but !e conclude that he did not make his offence e0plicitly clear. 1i en the standards e0pected of a Member of *arliament, he should ha e done so. The Nazi Salute After the meal Mark Fornier ga e a $a%i salute. Mr Burley said that this !as only at the prompting of the Mail on "unday +ournalist !ho !as at the restaurant and !ho broke the story. (e accept this account. The Chanting of the Names of Nazi Figures )t is reported that after the meal, in a pub, members of the group chanted the names of prominent $a%i figures. Mr Burley said that he !as not present at that pub and at no point chanted names himself.

(e accept this account. Reports of Complaints Mr Burley denies that any complaints !ere made against the group at any point !hen he !as present. )ndeed he argued that the restaurant o!ners e en pro ided a complimentary round of drinks to the group at the end of the e ening. 2learly offence !as caused by this incident. #o!e er, !e accept that complaints !ere not raised !ith him at the time. Recommendations The 3eport concludes that Mr Burley-s conduct caused deep offence and that he acted in an unacceptable and offensi e !ay. #e no! recognises and accepts this. #e has already been sacked as a *arliamentary *ri ate "ecretary. #e and his family ha e been sub+ected to massi e press interest and one of the attendees at the party has lost his +ob as a result. The 3eport concludes that it !as appropriate for him to be sacked and reprimanded as recognition of the offence that he has caused as a 2onser ati e Member of *arliament. )n addition, the 3eport recommends that through the #olocaust Memorial 4ducational Trust, he should arrange a isit to Ausch!it% to more profoundly appreciate the offence caused. Mr Burley is not a bad man, still less a racist or anti/"emite. #o!e er, his actions !ere stupid and offensi e, and the conclusions and recommendations reflect that.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful