A former British lawmaker in the governing Conservative party was on Tuesday sentenced to two years in jail for sexually assaulting two women.

Charlie Elphicke assaulted the first woman in 2007 in what the judge said was a "terrifying episode" at his home, groping her and chasing her while chanting "I'm a naughty Tory".

Nine years later, by now an MP for the port town of Dover, he conducted a "campaign of harassment" including two assaults against a young parliamentary researcher.

Sentencing Elphicke at London's Southwark Crown Court, Judge Philippa Whipple said: "You are a sexual predator who used your success and respectability as a cover."

Elphicke's defence lawyer had appealed against a jail term, arguing his client was the primary carer for his teenage son, who had been subjected to "vicious bullying" at school over his father's trial.

The judge acknowledged he had lost his career and reputation, but said given "the gross breach of your position of power... I am satisfied that appropriate punishment can only be achieved by immediate custody".

Elphicke will serve up to half his two-year term in prison before being released on licence.

He was an MP between 2010 and 2019, but suspended from the Conservatives after the allegations were made against him. 

His wife Natalie won his Dover seat in last year's general election.

She had announced after his conviction in July that she had ended their 25-year-old marriage, but on Tuesday said she supported his attempts to clear his name, saying he did not get a fair trial.

Elphicke's case and the #MeToo movement have helped shine a spotlight on what one 2018 report described as a culture of harassment and bullying in  parliament.

It prompted an overhaul of complaints and investigation procedures as authorities sought to shrug off the "Pestminster" label.

Separately, one of Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson's MPs was this summer arrested on suspicion of rape. The unnamed lawmaker has agreed not to attend parliament while out on bail. 

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