The Scottish Conservative MP accused of drunkenly groping other men in a Commons bar is facing a second inquiry into his conduct.

Ross Thomson, 31, who has described claims against him as “completely false”, last week referred himself to the Tory party’s in-house disciplinary panel.

However the Aberdeen South MP now faces another probe by Westminster’s ethics watchdog, with potentially grave implications for his parliamentary career.

It follows police being called to a report of “sexual touching” around 11pm last Tuesday in the Strangers’ Bar at Westminster, where Mr Thomson had been drinking.

Officers said they spoke to three men in their 20s and 30s, but there were no formal allegation made and no one was arrested.

Read more: Ross Thomson MP breaks silence following allegations of groping men in Commons bar

Mr Thomson went to ground after story broke, but has promised to return to work.

The Sunday Times reported a Commons researcher who was in the bar that night has complained about the MP to Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards Kathryn Stone.

The Commissioner’s remit includes investigating “complaints from the parliamentary community about harassment, bullying or sexual harassment by MPs”.

If she holds an inquiry into the allegations, Mr Thomson would be required to cooperate with it under the MPs’ code of conduct and to give a “full, truthful and prompt account”.

If the Commissioner found a rules breach, she would report it to the Standards Committee, which decides on sanctions and can recommend expulsion in the most serious cases.

Separately, the Scottish Sun reported Mr Thomson had been involved in a previous incident in the same Commons bar in which he clowned around in a Royal Navy cap.

The paper quoted an eyewitness who said the MP had been drinking before he took a high-ranking officer’s cap from a coat rack and put in on his head last May.

“It was a little bit funny but inappropriate. It was drunken antics,” the witness said.
On Friday, after two days of to-ing and fro-ing with Tory party whips, Mr Thomson finally released a public statement about the allegations.

It said: “A series of allegations have been made against me that have featured in the media.

“I would like to state that these allegations from anonymous sources are completely false.

“No complaint has been made to the police, Parliament or the Conservative Party.

“Nevertheless in the interests of openness and transparency, I am referring myself to the Conservative Party’s Disciplinary Panel of the Code of Conduct.”

Catriona Matheson, the SNPs head communications at Westminster, called it “jaw dropping”.

She tweeted: “It was the talk of Parliament yesterday because the bar was packed and there were multiple eyewitnesses. I spoke to several people who were horrified by what they saw.”

An eyewitness also told The Herald they saw Mr Thomson groping the crotch of a man in his mid to late 20s, adding: “It absolutely beggars belief that he can deny all of it.”

Another witness told The Herald the MP was “paralytically drunk”.

Mr Thomson has yet to respond to a request for comment.

However a source close to him said he would be happy to cooperate with any inquiry.

The SNP and Scottish Conservatives declined to comment.