SACKED Welsh minister Carl Sargeant felt "besieged and powerless" and did not trust the Labour Party when he came out on Twitter with news of allegations against him, the inquest was told.

Appearing before the inquest via video link Louise Magee, General Secretary of Welsh Labour, said that on November 3 last year Matthew Greenhough, senior special adviser to First Minister Carwyn Jones, informed her of a reshuffle to take place that same day.

He also informed her that Alyn and Deeside AM Carl Sargeant was to lose his cabinet position in that reshuffle.

She had already been made aware by the First Minister about complaints of inappropriate behaviour made against Mr Sargeant.

Not long after midday an email arrived containing a letter from the First Minister, she explained, which stated that three women had come forward to his office to make complaints about Mr Sargeant relating to "unwelcome attention, inappropriate touching and groping".

He suggested an investigation into the matter.

The hearing was told a number of people were then brought "into the loop" as the letter was forwarded to a number of senior Labour Party figures in order for a decision over Mr Sargeant's suspension to be made.

Shortly thereafter, Mr Sargeant called Louise Magee's office.

She said: "He was calm. He was polite. He sounded frustrated that he didn't know what was going on, that he didn't know whether he was being suspended and that he didn't know who the people were."

At that point she was not able to tell Mr Sargeant whether or not he would be suspended but she made it clear that it was a possibility, she told the hearing, adding he would be informed by email and then spoken to by someone from the party.

The first email containing his letter of suspension, sent at 1.57pm, bounced back.

The second, sent to another address shortly afterwards, did not.

Mr Sargeant later emailed Louise Magee stating he had found out about suspension via Twitter.

She told the inquest the letter of suspension would have been sent before any statement was put out.

Asked why she had not felt it was right to afford Mr Sargeant a chance to learn about or respond to the allegations, she said it would have been "inappropriate" in her job, but that he would have had the chance to respond as part of the Labour Party investigation.

John Gittins, coroner for North Wales East and Central, later called Mr Sargeant's friend Daran Hill to give evidence.

He told the hearing he had last seen his friend in person a few weeks before his death and that in recent months he had seemed "less settled".

"He seemed distracted some of the time," he said. "I think there were issues in his home life, he seemed unsettled professionally - it just wasn't him.

"He was under the belief he was going to be removed in a coming reshuffle.

"He was becoming increasingly paranoid about it. There were rumours everywhere.

"It seemed to me he was sensing some kind of conspiracy was coming."

Mr Hill spoke with Mr Sargeant by text after his sacking and helped to draft a tweet which the Alyn and Deeside AM put out the same afternoon.

In the tweet – which First Minister Carwyn Jones previously told the inquest had sparked a 'media frenzy' – Mr Sargeant revealed allegations had been made against him.

Describing the motivation behind the tweet, Mr Hill explained: "I think he felt besieged and powerless. He said he wanted to make his position clear.

"The tweet was work of me, Carl and David Taylor.

"Carl initiated it but he was not a words person. He didn't want people to think he had been removed for incompetence. That was really important to him.

"Carl wanted to set a clear narrative about him setting out there were allegations against him.

"He basically did not trust the Labour Party by that point."

The inquest also heard a statement from David Taylor, a friend of Mr Sargeant who was previously employed by the Labour Party.

In it he explained that they exchanged texts following Mr Sargeant's departure from government.

He said one of the messages he received from Mr Sargeant read: "Not feeling great guys. You're amazing friends.

"Sorry for letting you all down.

"I'd have gone under today without friends."