Sergeant major at army battle school suspended over claims he punched and groped guests at boozy work dinner

A SERGEANT Major at the Army’s Infantry Battle School has been suspended over claims he punched and groped guests at a boozy work dinner after passing out in a toilet.

Warrant Officer Michael Ransley, who was responsible for discipline, was stripped of his duties pending a probe as Defence Secretary Ben Wallace blasted Army Top Brass over a string of recent scandals.

Wallace summoned the Army Board, led by ex-SAS boss General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith, for an extraordinary dressing down today amid fears of a discipline crisis.

It came after The Sun revealed three brigadiers had been suspended or moved sideways over allegations of bullying, fraud and misconduct.

Seven instructors at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst are under investigation over the suicide of a female cadet in 2019.

And Major Glen Haughton, the top enlisted soldier in charge of upholding standards across all three Armed Forces, was suspended in July over claims he romped with a junior's soldier’s wife.

Lieutenant Colonel Damian Flanagan, commander of the Brecon-based battle school, said he suspended WO1 Ransley, his enlisted righthand man, “pending an investigation into allegations of social misconduct” at a do in the Sergeants’ Mess.

Lt Col Flanagan wrote: “It is, of course, a reminder of the behaviours, values and standards that we are expected to maintain.”

A source said WO1 Ransley, from the Princess of Wales Royal Regiment, swung at a comrade who found him passed out and advised him to go to bed.

WO1 Ransley, who was appointed Regimental Sergeant Major in June, staggered back to the party, a source said, where he allegedly behaved inappropriately to guests.

His colleagues tried to hush it up but reports reached the commanding officer “from someone outside of the unit,” Lt Col Flanagan said.

The Army is also facing historic claims that a soldier from the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment murdered sex-worker Agnes Wanjiru in Kenya in 2012.

In a joint statement after their showdown meeting Wallace and Gen Carleton Smith said they had a "full and frank discussion" about issues that went to the core of the Army and its culture.

"The Army is only as good as the people who serve in it and the leadership exhibited by officers and senior non-commissioned officers," they said.

"Recent events have brought to light important issues that require all our people to play their part in resolving."

In March, Major General Nick Welch became the most senior officer be convicted at court martial for over 200 years when he was sentenced to 21 months in prison of fraudulently claiming his children’s boarding school feels.

An Army spokesperson said: “We are aware of an incident involving a soldier at the Infantry Battle School on 16 October.

"The matter is currently the subject of an ongoing investigation and it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

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