Conservative MP Crispin Blunt has apologised for a statement defending fellow MP Imran Ahmad Khan, who was convicted of sexual assault.
Wakefield MP Khan was found guilty on Monday of assaulting a 15-year-old boy in 2008.
Mr Blunt had called the verdict a “dreadful miscarriage of justice” in a statement on his website.
But he has deleted the message after Tory bosses said it was “wholly unacceptable” and has also apologised.
The Reigate MP said: “I am sorry that my defence of him has been a cause of significant upset and concern not least to victims of sexual offences.”
He has also resigned as chair of a cross-party committee of MPs that campaigns for LGBT+ rights around the world, after several members of it quit in protest at his statement.