Jennifer Arcuri, the American businesswoman at the center of suspected conflicts of interest and misconduct involving British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, admitted in an interview that she had an affair with the politician when he was Mayor of London. , writes the newspaper The Daily Mail. Downing Street made no comment.
“I don’t need to say … everyone already knows … But I’m not going to talk about it,” replied Arcuri when asked if he had an involvement with Johnson when he was still with his second wife, Marina Wheeler, said the diary . In a conversation with the newspaper, the 35-year-old American said that Johnson bombarded her with “avalanches of passion”.
When asked about whether she was in love with the now prime minister, Arcuri said: “At the time I had a deep affection for him, but I never used the word L [de “love”, amor]. I wouldn’t have recognized being in love. I liked this man very much and that is decidedly clear. That’s all I want to say ”.
Hours after knowing the article, Arcuri criticized its content, without explaining what parts he was calling into question. In a reaction through Twitter, she stated that “we all have more to do, given the state of the world” and said she was “truly humiliated” by the article, describing it as an “attempt to spread facts about things that were never said or discussed” .
When the allegations were made known last year, Arcuri gave a series of interviews in which he spoke of “a very special relationship”. She even said that after meeting in 2011, in a “sweeping” meeting, Johnson visited her at least ten times in the office he had at home, in Shoreditch, in the British capital. It is known that the Prime Minister spoke for free at four events of the start-up of Arcuri, the technology company Innotech.
“They claim that I benefited financially from my friendship with Boris … it’s not true,” said Arcuri in an interview with Daily Mail.
The nature of this relationship became the subject of public scrutiny after it was revealed that the businesswoman and former model had received thousands of pounds in public money and had privileged access to commercial trips abroad (New York, Tel Aviv) through Johnson’s intervention, having come to benefit from state support, including through London and Partners, an agency that works with the municipality. When these facts were released by the press, the municipality, now led by the trabalhista Sadiq Khan, he said he had “information that there may have been a crime”.
Conflict of interests
The municipality requested an investigation from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IOPC), which investigates complaints and allegations of misconduct in the police, as Johnson was chief of the mayor’s office for Policing and Crime, equivalent to a police commissioner. .
This commission decided not to proceed with a criminal investigation, but in its 112-page report on the matter, it concluded that Johnson should have declared a conflict of interest – in deciding not to do so he may have violated the Greater London assembly’s code of conduct. “There is no evidence that Johnson influenced sponsorship payments or participation in travel, but there is evidence to suggest that the decision makers thought that there was a close relationship and that it influenced their decision making,” said the director-director. general, Michael Lockwood.
The IOPC noted that Johnson never acknowledged having had an affair with Arcuri, but neither did he deny it. The American refused to discuss her personal life with the investigators, but told them that there had been “whispers about me since the first day”, recalls the newspaper The Guardian.
When the conclusions of this investigation were known, the prime minister, who had always denied any less than proper behavior, criticized the “vexing allegations” that had been made against him.
However, the city council itself decided to investigate Johnson’s conduct when the IOPC ended its investigation in May.