Police were called after a City lawyer burst into the office of the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Finchley & Golders Green and abused her, the Jewish Chronicle is reporting.
It is claimed that on Friday afternoon Jonathan Metliss stormed into the office of Luciana Berger, who defected from the Labour Party and is now standing for the Lib Dems, called her “evil” and a “disgrace”, before tearing campaign posters and leaflets from the windows and walls.
Metliss, who now works at Axiom Stone, is a familiar name in the City for his more than 20 years as a partner SJ Berwin, followed by a stint at Gordon Dadds.
The Chronicle also claimed that Metliss said that by standing in Finchley against current Conservative incumbent Mike Freer, Berger was enabling Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to become Prime Minister. Berger is tipped by many to win the seat.
Responding in a statement, Metliss said: “As I was walking to synagogue on Friday evening, I dropped into the office of a friend and business associate whom I have known for many years. I saw a Lib Dem poster in the window and went in to tell him that he should not be supporting Luciana Berger. I am a supporter of the work that Mike Freer does as the Conservative MP for Finchley and Golders Green.
“I had no idea that it was the Lib Dem campaign headquarters, nor that it was being used by their new candidate Ms Berger. There was no signage or any other indication to suggest that it was. Even after I went inside that was still not apparent to me.”
“Ms Berger was NOT present in the office at that time. My interaction with my friend lasted only seconds but it resulted in me tearing down a poster as I walked out, which was an ill-judged and regrettable act on my part.
“On Monday evening I returned and my friend asked me to apologise, which I did unreservedly. That apology was accepted by him. Ms Berger and her team were present at the time. Whilst I acknowledge that my outburst was ill-judged, nobody was harmed or threatened and save for a torn poster, no damage was caused. I have unreservedly apologised for any distress that I caused.”
Meanwhile, another well-known name in the City has expressed his disappointment at being stood down by the Brexit Party as a candidate.
Former Clyde & Co COO and Allen & Overy global chief knowledge officer David Jabbari was selected to fight for the Brexit Party in Newbury, but has been asked to stand down by party leader Nigel Farage following the party’s decision not to compete in Conservative-held seats.
Yes, regrettably we have been asked to stand down but the fight against the Lib Dems goes on. I would encourage all Brexiteers in #Newbury to get behind @Laura__Farris and stop the #LibDems https://t.co/6v3e58U9of
— David Jabbari (@david_jabbari) November 11, 2019
Jabbari has endorsed Conservative candidate Laura Farris, also a lawyer, but warned that he had “hundreds of [Brexit Party] supporters in Newbury watching for any signs of Remain sympathies.”
Thank you to @NewburyToday for this. I should point out that the decision was taken centrally by #TheBrexitParty not by me. While I am supporting @Laura__Farris I have hundreds of BP supporters in #Newbury watching for any signs of #Remain sympathies!! https://t.co/GWqHCKeabE
— David Jabbari (@david_jabbari) November 12, 2019