“Historical Sex Offences Charges Lead to Resignation of DUP Leader, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson”

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The head of the Democratic Unionist Party, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, has handed in his resignation following charges related to past sexual misconduct.

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The DUP has made it public that Sir Jeffrey Donaldson is resigning and finds himself at the heart of a controversy after the police announced a man is being charged.

Along with the politician, a woman aged 57 has been apprehended and charged for aiding and abetting more offences. They’re set to face court later this month.

On Good Friday, the party released a statement: “The Party Chairman got a letter from Sir Jeffrey Donaldson MP confirming he’s been charged with historical allegations and is resigning as Leader of the Democratic Unionist Party effective immediately.

“The Party Rules dictate that the Party Officers have now suspended Mr Donaldson’s membership, awaiting the court’s decision. This morning, the Party Officers have unanimously named Mr Gavin Robinson MP as the temporary Party Leader.”

This news follows the unexpected removal of the DUP leader’s social media profiles earlier today.

It is believed that the two accused were taken into custody by detectives on Thursday morning and after interrogation, were charged the same evening.

A spokesperson for the police informed The Independent: “The Police Service of Northern Ireland’s detectives arrested and charged a 61-year-old man with aged sexual offences.

“At the same time, a 57-year-old woman was also arrested and charged for assisting and encouraging additional offences.

“They’re scheduled to appear at Newry Magistrates Court on April 24.

“The usual process is that the Public Prosecution Service will review all charges.”

This development occurs amidst speculations that the DUP was arranging an “urgent meeting” this morning, with analysts suggesting the discussions were “highly important”.

Last week, there was an incident at London Heathrow airport where a man was taken off a plane after he had a dispute with Sir Jeffrey.

The police confirmed that on Wednesday evening, a passenger was escorted off the plane due to a “verbal dispute” with the politician from Northern Ireland.

The DUP wouldn’t comment on the incident, but a party insider verified that a man had been verbally aggressive, as per the news.

The surprising step-down marks the conclusion of Sir Jeffrey’s 40-year political journey and arrives just after a particularly crucial decision in his career, when he decided to return the DUP to a power-sharing agreement.

In February, the party consented to re-enter Stormont after drawn-out discussions over a new accord on post-Brexit trade protocols and a range of measures aimed at ensuring Northern Ireland’s constitutional status within the UK.

Sir Jeffrey, age 61, was originally elected to represent Lagan Valley in 1997 with the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP).

Yet in 2003, due to deep-rooted opposition to the Good Friday Agreement and the leadership of David Trimble, he disclosed his exit from the UUP. In 2004, he joined the DUP and was elected as leader in 2021. This year, he became the longest-serving MP in Northern Ireland.

In 2009, Sir Jeffrey made an apology for expensing pay-to-view films on his parliamentary expenses during hotel stays. He returned the £555 and admitted he was mistaken to have made such claims.

He received a knighthood in 2016 as recognition for his political work.

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