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5 May 2020updated 06 Oct 2020 9:45am

Top UK government adviser quits after breaching lockdown

By Rohan Banerjee

Professor Neil Ferguson, the scientist whose modelling research led to the UK’s lockdown measures against the coronavirus pandemic, has resigned from his position within the government’s scientific advisory group (SAGE).

A Daily Telegraph investigation found that the 51-year-old epidemiologist, who is based at Imperial College London, had at least twice been visited at his home by a woman with whom he was in a romantic relationship. The woman, who is married, lives elsewhere.

Ferguson, who recovered from his own case of coronavirus recently after a period of self-isolation, has apologised for his actions. He told the Telegraph: “I acted in the belief that I was immune, having tested positive for coronavirus and completely isolated myself for almost two weeks after developing symptoms.

“I deeply regret any undermining of the clear messages around the continued need for social distancing to control this devastating epidemic. The government guidance is unequivocal, and is there to protect all of us.”

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