THE senior expatriate ICAC officer accused of sexually harassing female colleagues spoke out for the first time yesterday with an emotional declaration that his conscience was clear. He said the strain on himself and his family arising from the controversy, which has shaken the Independent Commission Against Corruption and prompted a fresh inquiry by police, was difficult to live with. Speaking on condition of anonymity, the father-of-two said the circumstances surrounding his case had been twisted by sacked ICAC deputy director of operations, Alex Tsui Ka-kit. Mr Tsui, who was summarily dismissed by ICAC Commissioner Bertrand de Speville for unspecified reasons, was partly responsible for an internal probe into allegations of sexual harassment against the chief investigator. ''Me and my family wish the whole thing would go away. We are not coping with it very well at all,'' the officer told the South China Morning Post, his voice cracking with emotion. Flanked by his wife in their spacious government flat at Mount Butler, he added: ''But my conscience is clear. Mr Tsui well knows that there was a proper investigation and that I was disciplined. ''And while I might not agree with the result, I have accepted it. But because I have kept silent, this has been a very one-sided issue. ''For Mr Tsui to say the things he has is very wrong and putting a lot of strain on me and my family. ''Now all I want is to get on with my job for as long as I'm in Hong Kong. I don't want to get into a slanging match.'' The officer's eldest daughter, who left the United Kingdom with her family when her father joined the ICAC 12 years ago, took time out from her work yesterday to visit the Mount Butler home and offer moral support. Wiping away tears, she said: ''I am proud of my father. He's a gentleman.'' Mr Tsui has alleged in a detailed statement to police that his former boss, Jim Buckle, was a longtime close friend of the chief investigator and sought to pervert the course of justice by supervising an ''inadequate'' probe into the sexual harassment claims. Mr Buckle has denied the claims, which are being scrutinised by a small team of police officers attached to the Crime Wing. In May, the Attorney-General's chambers examined the ICAC's internal investigation file and determined that there should be no prosecution for sexual assault because a conviction would be unlikely. Mr de Speville has confirmed that he disciplined the officer, who has been transferred out of the section where the harassment was alleged to have occurred, and told him that his contract would not be renewed after it expires in two months. The officer, described by sources close to the family as affable and popular and with a keen interest in horse racing, is expected to return to the UK soon with his wife.