Labour MP Simon Danczuk has had his rape case against him dropped after it was ruled there is "insufficient evidence" to provide a realistic prospect of conviction. Danzcuk, who was suspended by the party during the investigation, described his "relief" that he will not face prosecution.

The Rochdale MP said the investigation against him by Lancashire Police has been "immensely stressful period for me and my family".

He added: "I am grateful for the decision made by the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service) and I am relieved that the investigation has now come to an end. Even though I maintained my innocence throughout, this has been an immensely stressful period for me and my family. I thank them for their continuing support."

He added: "I now expect the Labour Party to conclude their investigation into these matters and lift my suspension as soon as possible."

The CPS confirmed the woman who made the allegation, dating back to 2006, has been informed.

A spokesperson added: "Following receipt of a file from Lancashire Police in relation to Operation Lotus, the evidence was considered by a specialist prosecutor in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors. It has been decided that there is insufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction."

No stranger to making the headlines, in December 2015, Danczuk was suspended from the Labour party after he asked a teenage girl if she wanted to be "spanked" and told her how "horny" she made him. He apologised via Twitter, saying he had acted like an "old fool".

A spokesman for Lancashire Constabulary said: "We entirely respect the decision made by the Crown Prosecution Service and would like to thank them for considering this matter so carefully.

"Whenever anyone takes the brave step to come forward to the police, or provides evidence to such an investigation making serious allegations of a sexual nature, it is absolutely right that we carry out a professional investigation into all such reports, while recognising the impact on all those involved can be significant.

"While these allegations were made against a public figure, we have been committed throughout to investigating this matter in the same professional and victim-focused way that we would all such allegations.

"We also recognise the personal impact such proceedings may have on the person against whom the allegations are made and have sought throughout to ensure the investigation is conducted in a fair, professional and proportionate way."