According to the department, the referral was made after a review of documents in advance of the Covid public inquiry. A spokesperson for the former prime minister dismissed allegations of violations as a politically motivated hoax.
Both the Metropolitan and Thames Valley Police have stated that they are evaluating the received information. The Cabinet Office stated that officials were required by civil service regulations to disclose the documents to the police.
Sources reported that Mr. Johnson has been referred to Thames Valley police after his ministerial diary disclosed visits by family and friends to Chequers, the prime minister's Buckinghamshire country estate, during the pandemic.
Thames Valley Police stated that it had received a report of potential breaches of the Health Protection Regulations at Chequers, Buckinghamshire, between June 2020 and May 2021. The Met Police issued a similar statement, indicating that their intelligence pertained to potential security breaches at Downing Street. It is believed that Mr. Johnson has not been in contact with the police.
The former prime minister's spokesman denied unequivocally that there had been additional Covid rule violations. The events in question all complied with the regulations, either because they were held outdoors or because they fell under another legal exemption. They consist of regular meetings with government employees and advisors.
It appears that some members of the government have decided to make unsubstantiated suggestions to both the police and the Privileges Committee. Many will conclude that this is yet another politically motivated hoax.
The spokesman stated that Mr. Johnson's attorneys had notified the Cabinet Office and the Commons Privileges Committee that the events were legal and did not violate any Covid regulations.
The seven-member committee has been investigating whether Mr. Johnson misled the House of Representatives regarding Covid violations in government buildings. The committee stated in a statement that it had received additional evidence from the government last week and had requested a response from Mr. Johnson, both of which it would now consider in its investigation.
If the committee concludes that Mr. Johnson intentionally misled MPs about the events, he could be suspended from the House of Commons. Mr. Johnson's spokesman also deemed it "bizarre and unacceptable" that "no contact was made with Mr. Johnson prior to making these false allegations to the police and the Privileges Committee." The Cabinet Office has denied that Mr. Johnson was not notified beforehand.
The Cabinet Office stated that the information it provided to the police stemmed from the "normal" examination of documents to be submitted to the public inquiry into the government's response to the pandemic. In accordance with the requirements of the Civil Service Code, this information has been forwarded to the appropriate authorities and is now their concern.
Angela Rayner, the deputy leader of the Labour Party, responded to the announcement by stating that the police should investigate the new allegations, but the government must explain who else knew at the time and why this information has only recently come to light.
Daisy Cooper, the deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats, stated that Mr. Johnson should finally contemplate his position as an MP.
Lindsay Jackson, the spokesperson for Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, stated that Mr. Johnson was completely unqualified for any form of public service, let alone the position of prime minister.