MP worked for Dr Fox ‘adviser’

Under pressure: Liam Fox
Under pressure: Liam Fox

MP Iain Stewart has distanced himself from the controversy surrounding former business partner Adam Werritty and Defence Secretary Liam Fox.

Mr Stewart, the member for Milton Keynes South, was a director at Security Futures – a research company of which Mr Werritty was executive director.

The relationship between Dr Fox and Mr Werritty is currently under scrutiny in Parliament following revelations the pair travelled to meetings and conferences across the world together. Mr Werritty even passed himself off as an advisor to the defence secretary.

Mr Fox has been accused of breaching ministerial guidelines in relation to his friendship with Mr Werritty, who was best man at his wedding and a former flatmate.

Mr Stewart worked with Mr Werritty at Security Futures, along with MP for Thanet South Laura Sandys.

He said: “I’ve known Adam since he worked in Parliament as an Intern for Liam when at University and he asked me if I would be a nominal company secretary when he set it (Security Futures) up.”

Both MPs stood down from the company prior to being elected to Parliament last year.

Mr Werritty also worked with Dr Fox at Atlantic Bridge, a charity set up to foster relationships between Britain and the US.

In October 2008, Mr Stewart, then a prospective MP, joined eight other parliamentary candidates on a ‘transatlantic leadership exchange programme’ organised by Atlantic Bridge.

Mr Stewart told the Citizen: “I used to be company secretary for a not-for-profit organisation called Security Futures, which was set up in late 2006.

“My colleague, Laura Sandys, now MP for Thanet South, served as a non-executive director and Adam Werritty was the only executive director.

“Laura and I were not paid for our roles, received no benefits and held no shares in the company. The organisation was not a consultancy. It was established to coordinate research work, with particular focus on energy policy, and it held a number of forum discussion events.

“My role was effectively a nominal one. I had no involvement in the day-to-day running of the organisation.

“Laura and I stood down as directors a couple of months before the 2010 election, and the organisation was wound up later that year.

“Since being elected as an MP I have had no business dealings with Mr Werritty and, indeed, have no remunerated employment other than being an MP.”

Dr Fox visited Milton Keynes last month as a guest speaker at a dinner organised by Milton Keynes Business Leaders.