LABOUR MP George Foulkes was yesterday charged with assaulting a

police officer and being drunk and disorderly after an incident last

month outside the House of Commons. The issue could threaten his future

on the Front Bench.

Mr Foulkes, 51, was bailed by police to appear before Bow Street

magistrates on September 9. The MP for Carrick, Cumnock, and Doon Valley

arrived at Charing Cross police station on the back of a motor cycle.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said the MP was charged with being drunk and

disorderly, contrary to the Criminal Justice Act, and with assaulting Mr

John Williams, a constable in the Metropolitan Police, in the execution

of his duty, contrary to the Police Act of 1951.

Mr Foulkes could not be reached for comment yesterday. A woman

answering the telephone at his home in Ayr said: ''I'm afraid there is

no comment on that.'' He is married with two sons and a daughter.

He was arrested on July 21 after attending a Westminster reception

held by the Scotch Whisky Association. He was returning on foot to the

Commons with other MPs when the incident occurred. An elderly woman

involved in the incident was taken to hospital

The day after his arrest, Mr Foulkes, a member of Labour's Front Bench

defence team, was missing from defence questions in the House,

There has been speculation that the issue could jeopardise Mr

Foulkes's chances of promotion to the Shadow Cabinet.

* Any MP convicted of an offence may be expelled from the Commons if

the House so decides.