News agency 'offered cash for topless photos of MP taken when she was a child'

Labour MP Gloria De Piero has urged journalists to stop looking for topless photos which were taken of her more than 20 years ago.

The former political editor of GMTV made the plea on her website today after learning that a news agency acting for a national newspaper had offered money to the owner of a building in Bradford where they thought the photos could be found. De Piero, 40, was promoted last week to Ed Miliband's cabinet as spokesperson for women. The photos are believed to have been taken when she was 15.

Yesterday I learned that a news agency claiming to be acting on behalf of a national newspaper have offered several thousand pounds to obtain topless pictures I posed for when I was a teenager. The offer was made to the owner of a building in Bradford. I understand that he was offered money for access to the building and a further payment if the pictures were found.

I have talked about why I posed for these pictures in interviews before. I thought at the time it was a way of improving my circumstances. This is part of my story and part of who I am. I can’t change it now but this happened over twenty years ago.

It is now time to call off the hunt for these pictures and let me get on with the job I was elected to do, representing the people of Ashfield and serving in the shadow cabinet.

I don’t think anyone wants politics to be open only to those people who were planning their political careers in their teens. I would like to see a politics that represents our country, including many more women from all walks of life, and that is something I am passionately committed to help bring about.

No one should have to worry that something they did when they were young might prevent them from serving their community or getting involved in politics at a local or national level.

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