Former minister David Davis has confirmed he intervened to stop an attack on a rough sleeper near Parliament on Tuesday evening.
The veteran Tory MP said he stepped in when he two men began “kicking seven bells” out of another man on the floor.
He told the BBC the man was so “badly beaten up” that he let him stay on his sofa overnight to recover.
The victim was still bleeding the next morning and was taken to hospital by Mr Davis.
Asked if he was scared during the scuffle, Mr Davis said his main concern had been “getting him out of risk” and that the incident was over within a minute.
“One of them wasn’t really trying, the other was very aggressive. The important thing is to intimidate rather than be intimidated.”
Speaking to the Evening Standard, who first reported the story, Mr Davis said: “It was messy, but he’s all right. He’s still alive and that’s the important thing.”
Mr Davis has been an MP for the Yorkshire constituency of Haltemprice and Howden since 1987 and during his parliamentary career has served as a whip and Foreign Office minister.
He was also Brexit secretary under Theresa May, but resigned in 2018 in protest at her proposed Brexit deal.
Before becoming a politician, Mr Davis trained with the SAS as a reservist.
Asked why he had got involved, Mr Davis told the BBC that 30 years ago there had been an incident on a South London common where someone “got kicked in the head and died”.
“After that I could never walk away again.”
A recent report by Policy Exchange claimed that the area around Parliament had “declined into a degree of squalor and disorder”.
The report said that between 2013/14 and 2021/22, recorded violent crime increased in the Westminster area by 168% going from 68 crimes a year to 182, while the rest of the borough increased from 6,807 to 10,040, a 47% increase.