Boris Johnson is facing accusations that he awarded public funds to his close friend Jennifer Arcuri, a former model turned tech entrepreneur.
The allegations date back to Johnson’s time as Mayor of London, and also concern Arcuri’s privileged access to a series of overseas trade missions led by Johnson.
But a Red Roar investigation finds that these could be just the tip of the iceberg. Here are five other benefits that Arcuri appears to have enjoyed while Boris Johnson was Mayor of London.
1 Access to Johnson’s elections guru Lynton Crosby
A series of three tweets from Arcuri suggest that Boris Johnson put her in touch with Tory elections guru Lynton Crosby. Arcuri publicly tweeted at Crosby, “Boris J has asked me to get in touch with you regarding #innotechsummit”, an event she was holding to promote her business. Her enquiries appear to have met with success, as she tweeted days later “looking forward to meeting you [at] the @InnoTechSummi [sic]. Thank you for all your support! We cant wait to feature Boris Johnson!”
2 Private tour of the 2012 Olympics athletes’ village
Not only did Arcuri appear to enjoy a private tour of the athletes’ village during the 2012 Olympics, but she boasted about her experience on Twitter and posted a video on Youtube.
3 Sitting in the Mayor’s chair in City Hall
Amongst a series of photos on the former model’s Facebook page is a photo of Arcuri sat in the Mayor’s seat in City Hall, presumably on a tour of the building.
4 Advice on setting up a tech start-up
Commenting on a photo of herself with Boris Johnson on his tour bus in May 2012, Arcuri appeared to credit Boris Johnson with the creation of her tech events business, saying “this was the day InnoTech was born.” Johnson was the keynote speaker at InnoTech’s first event in April 2012, alongside far-right commentator Milo Yiannopoulos.
5 Defending Johnson’s privacy on Twitter
The relationship wasn’t all one way – Arcuri was quick to leap to Johnson’s defence on Twitter, notably defending his right to privacy after a grilling from journalist Eddie Mair, saying “@BorisJohnson personal biz:NOT 4 public2judge”.