Former Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon insisted “beyond doubt” she was “innocent of any wrongdoing” following her arrest in connection with an ongoing probe into the SNP’s finances on Sunday.
Ms Sturgeon was questioned for around seven hours on Sunday before she was released at about 5.25pm as part of the police investigation which began in July 2021.
She was the third, high-profile SNP politician to be arrested in connection with alleged irregularities in the party’s finances after complaints were raised almost two years ago.
After being released from custody pending further investigation on Sunday, the former SNP leader tweeted her “shock” and “distress” at the situation.
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) June 11, 2023
She said: “To find myself in the situation I did today when I am certain I have committed no offence is both a shock and deeply distressing.
“I know that this ongoing investigation is difficult for people, and I am grateful that so many continue to show faith in me and appreciate that I would never do anything to harm either the SNP or the country.”
Ms Sturgeon went on to say that she was “innocent of any wrongdoing,” adding: “Obviously, given the nature of this process, I cannot go into detail.
“However, I do wish to say this, and to do so in the strongest possible terms. Innocence is not just a presumption I am entitled to in law. I know beyond doubt that I am in fact innocent of any wrongdoing.”
Ms Sturgeon thanked her family and friends for giving her “much-needed strength” at this time and said she would take a “day or two” to process the latest development.
The statement finished: “To the many people who have sent messages of support over these past difficult weeks – including since today’s news broke – thank you for your kindness.
“Thank you also to my close circle of family and friends who are giving me much-needed strength at this time.
“Finally, while I will take a day or two to process this latest development, I intend to be back in Parliament soon where I will continue to represent my Glasgow Southside constituents to the very best of my ability.”
Peter Murrell, former SNP chief executive, and Colin Beattie MSP, former SNP treasurer, were arrested and released without charge pending further investigation, in April.
There was no police presence at Ms Sturgeon’s home in Uddingston on Sunday but a police vehicle occasionally drove past the house.
Members of Scotland’s media were gathered outside the detached property, which appeared to be empty.