DOMINIC Raab is being investigated over five fresh formal complaints about his conduct after Rishi Sunak referred the new allegations to the senior lawyer conducting a bullying inquiry.

Downing Street said the new accusations – taking the total number in Adam Tolley KC’s investigation to eight – relate to the Deputy Prime Minister's time at the Ministry of Justice.

The Prime Minister’s spokesman declined to discuss the “sensitive detail” of what period at the department the new allegations relate to, with Raab currently on his second stint as Justice Secretary.

He said: “I can confirm that the Prime Minister has now asked the investigator to include five further formal complaints relating to conduct at the Ministry of Justice as part of the ongoing investigation and in line with the existing terms of reference."

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Asked how Raab can remain in the role considering the breadth of the allegations, the spokesman said: “We think it’s right there is an independent process, that the investigator looks into these claims thoroughly before coming to a view.”

The official would not put a timescale on when the investigation will be concluded, but said it is hoped to be finished “swiftly”.

The Times revealed last month the detail of one complaint against Raab while at the Ministry of Justice, which alleged he reigned over a "perverse culture of fear" and described the PM's right hand man as having left colleagues in "tears" after speaking with them. 

And it was claimed at the start of the month, by sources who spoke with the Sunday Times, that Downing Street had been made aware of concerns about Raab's behaviour before he was appointed as Sunak's second-in-command. 

The Prime Minister has previously said he did not recognise the "characterisation" of Raab given by complainants.