BRAWL MP DENIES SEX WITH TEEN; 'Friendly' Joyce Charmed Helper Meg, 17

The Mirror (London, England), March 2, 2012 | Go to article overview

BRAWL MP DENIES SEX WITH TEEN; 'Friendly' Joyce Charmed Helper Meg, 17


Byline: JAMES LYONS

james.lyons@mirror.co.uk COMMONS "punch-up" MP Eric Joyce yesterday denied claims he had sex with Meg Lauder, 17.

But the father-of-two admitted becoming "very friendly" with the schoolgirl, said to be in awe of him as he bragged of his position.

The Scottish MP will appear in court next week charged with assaulting three Tories in a booze-fuelled punchup in a House of Commons bar.

And the 51-year-old former soldier, who reached the rank of major, now faces allegations he started a secret, two-year relationship with Meg Lauder when she was working on his 2010 election campaign.

Mr Joyce said: "She was super-helpful, very friendly. I was very friendly with her for several months, 18 months ago."

But the Labour MP insists he did not have a sexual relationship with Meg and says he bitterly regrets becoming close to her. "She was around a lot, that is the size of it," he added.

He says he has not seen Meg for at least a year and a half, although friends say she did get in touch to ask for money about six months ago.

Party sources claimed Mr Joyce, who has twin daughters of primary school age, charmed 5ft 2in Meg with tales of his Westminster contacts and political influence. One insider said: "Meg was rapture and totally consumed with the fact she was dealing with Eric Joyce the MP.

"He bragged about his Westminster contacts, made a big show of the fact he was an MP to her. He made a huge impression on her from the start and continued to do so."

Politics enthusiast Meg worked in Mr Joyce's Falkirk constituency office before the May 2010 election.

She was a pupil at Graeme High in Falkirk and appeared on a campaign leaflet beside him. Meg also had her photo taken with former Foreign Secretary David Miliband, Labour leader Ed's brother, and posted it on her Facebook page, writing: "David Miliband and I. Swoon."

In the months before, she and Mr Joyce chatted on Twitter about everything from TV shows to Trident nuclear submarines. …

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