Welsh politician named in ‘sex-pest’ scandal has been found dead
Former Welsh government minister Carl Sargeant has been found dead in his home just days after being suspended from the Labour Party over his “personal conduct.” He is believed to have taken his own life.
His family said they are “devastated beyond words” at the loss of “the glue that bound us together,” according to The Independent. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said the death was “terrible and deeply shocking news,” while his deputy Tom Watson said it is a “tragedy beyond words.”
Sargeant quit his post as cabinet secretary for communities and children in Cardiff last week after what he called “shocking and distressing” allegations were made against him. The nature of those allegations are not known.
Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones said Sargeant had been “removed” from the cabinet, while Sargeant said he wanted an independent investigation “to allow me to clear my name.”
His family said in a statement on Tuesday: “Carl was a much loved husband, father and friend. He wasn’t simply a part of our family. He was the glue that bound us together. He was the heart of our family. We loved him so very much.
“He was the most kind and caring husband, father, son and friend. We are devastated beyond words, and we know our grief will be shared by all those who knew and loved him.”
Sargeant had been a member of the Welsh Assembly since 2003. He was made minister for social justice and local government in 2009 and was appointed cabinet secretary for communities and children in May last year.
Last week, after his resignation, Sargeant said he wanted to clear his name by independent means. He said in a statement, according to Huffington Post: “I met with the [Welsh] First Minister today and he informed me allegations had been made about my personal conduct, which was shocking and distressing to me.
“The details of the allegations have yet to be disclosed to me.” He added that “given the nature of the allegations” he agreed with the first minister that it was right he “stands aside” from cabinet.
He added: “I look forward to returning to government once my name has been cleared.”