Page last updated at 17:51 GMT, Saturday, 25 April 2009 18:51 UK

Tory MP suing over e-mail smears

Nadine Dorries
Ms Dorries confronted Gordon Brown during Prime Minister's Questions

Tory MP Nadine Dorries is taking legal action over allegations contained in e-mails sent by Gordon Brown's former special adviser, she has announced.

Ms Dorries was one of a number of Conservative MPs named in e-mails sent by Downing Street aide Damian McBride.

Mr McBride sent the unfounded smears to ex-spin doctor Derek Draper who was planning to set up a website. He resigned after they were made public.

A statement on Ms Dorries' website said she had "proceeded with legal action".

"I am not going to say anything at all at this stage, other than that," she added.

Personal attacks

Ms Dorries secured a personal apology from Mr Brown when she confronted him over the smears at Prime Minister's Questions in the Commons on Wednesday.

The Mid-Bedfordshire MP asked: "Would you like to take this opportunity to apologise to me for what happened?"

Mr Brown replied: "Yes. And I have said sorry this has happened and I have also written to you personally."

The recipient of the e-mail, former Labour spin doctor and editor of the left-leaning LabourList blog Derek Draper, never published the allegations.

However, they came to light after the e-mail found its way to Westminster blogger Paul Staines, who writes under the name Guido Fawkes.

They also featured unfounded personal attacks on Conservative leader David Cameron and shadow chancellor George Osborne.

Conservative sources said Ms Dorries, a former nurse, was "spitting blood" about the smears but was not planning to make any further statements at this stage.

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