Shocker: Russian Spy Admits Affair With “Fondler” Hancock

Self-confessed teen fondler and Liberal Democrat MP Mike Hancock is in a bit of bother, again:

Well that’s a turn up for the books…

Alan Yentob Auctions BBC Internship For £4,000

With youth unemployment approaching a million the idea that rich parents can buy their children access to the top jobs is seen as particularly unfair. When the Tories were caught red-handed flogging internships for cash Tom Watson was quick out of the blocks:

“This is a crass example of rich Tories buying privilege. Most young people could only dream of this opportunity. The Conservatives flog them like baubles and fill their coffers with the profits. It is obscene.”

The BBC’s Andrew Marr joined in the kicking, “This money is going to be used by the Conservative Party, presumably, to tell us we’re all in it together.” So Guido is looking forward to similar outrage over the fact that the BBC’s Alan Yentob is at the centre of an intern-auctioning scandal. The charity “Kid’s Company” had a fundraising event on Wednesday 5 October attended by Clive Anderson and Rowan Atkinson plus the great and good of the liberal-luvvie media world. The auction was quite a hit with plenty of opportunity to “buy privilege”. Lot Number 9, “a week shadowing the BBC creative director” was particuarly popular – going for a total of £4,100. Guido would probably pay a similar amount not to spend a week with Alan Yentob…

So just how did the charity get such rare and much sought after access to the cut-throat world of BBC internships? When we asked the Beeb’s press office what Auntie’s policy was on internships, the Beeb’s line was that officially all “work experience placements” have to be advertised publicly and are overseen by the HR department. Except it seems if you are Alan Yentob who was clearly in breach of BBC policy. As chairman of “Kids Company” he just went round the rules and sold an opportunity “most young people could only dream of…” to the richest parents…

Rumour Mill Says Fox Might Go Tonight

And so the “Dear David/Dear Liam” rumour mill begins. Paul Waugh tweets that he is picking up chatter that Fox will walk tonight. It would make sense and take the sting out the inevitable savaging by the Sundays, but then it would also be out of character. Guido did a quick text around to be told the it was a load of cobblers. But then they will say that until they are setting up a microphone…

UPDATE: Speculation mounting. Think it’s Foxtrot Oscar time…

The Emerging Accounts Mystery

The Times allegations against Adam Werritty and his funders are so explosive because they are so detailed. Not only do they have the £147,000 coming in, but they also have the breakdown of account spending across the world which would imply the paper has seen all of the bank details. Clues to who might have leaked those are littered throughout the story:

“Oliver Hylton, a charity adviser to the head of CQS, a multibillion-pound hedge fund, befriended Mr Werritty through mutual Tory contacts. He became a director of Security Futures, the now defunct defence and energy consultancy that was also established by Mr Werritty, and agreed to become the sole director of Pargav in June last year — a move he acknowledged was “naive”. He came into my office and said I want to set up a new company. It sounds ridiculously naive in hindsight, but I agreed. I signed the documents and nothing more,” Mr Hylton said.”

As Guido reported yesterday CQS have bought in the spinners in order to handle this story and a quick glance over the list of other donors does not point to anyone who would have had the same access to the books. Given that he had a desk there, Werritty would have been in and out of the CQS offices, but it’s the “naive” Mr Hylton who, as the sole director, would have had to sign off said accounts…

UPDATE: Since publishing this post Guido has more and more reason to believe in a collusion between CQS/Hintze/Bell and this Times story. The other explanation is someone blagged the bank accounts of course. Lots of private spooks about…

UPDATE II: Oliver Hylton has been suspended suggesting he was the source of the leak.

The Detail That The Guardian Left Out Last Week

As the Fox saga rumbles on, this morning’s front-pages will be the most difficult for the Defence Secretary to face since Monday. The money trail is unravelling a rapid pace. However, it was a small detail in the Guardian story about the stag night of Fox’s official adviser Luke Coffey, that has got chins wagging. They claim that Fox extended his stop-over in Dubai on the way back from the front for “a boozy affair; they were drinking huge cocktails and they caused quite a stir.” Fox was not on leave at the time:

Fox arrived in Dubai on 17 June and immediately met Werritty. After their meeting with Dubai-based British businessman Harvey Boulter on the 41st floor of the Shangri-la hotel the pair are understood to have spent the rest of the day lounging by the pool and in Werritty’s hotel room.

There was a lot of speculation that the Guardian were leaving certain details out of their reporting last week in the expectation that they could get Fox regardless. As he digs in, it seems those concerns have gone out of the window…

UPDATE: Though it’s behind the The Times paywall, the most damning revelation today is the fact that one of the donors to Air Miles Adam was a private intelligence firm. Werritty’s non-profit Pargrav is under intense scrutiny:

“Details of Pargav’s accounts, seen by The Times, show that G3 Good Governance Group, a strategic advisory company, Tamares Real Estate, an investment company owned by Poju Zabludowicz, the chairman of BICOM — an organisation that lobbies the British Government on behalf of Israel — and Jon Moulton, a venture capitalist, were among more than six different entities that each paid up to £35,000 to Pargav since October last year”

Tricky…

Michael Hintze: For Whom the Bell Spins

Flying in from China to face the growing music, Michael Hintze, the donor in the spotlight regarding Liam Fox’s shadow operation, is said to have hired Lord Bell to spin for him this morning. Hintze, the chairman of the hedge fund CQS, gave Adam Werritty a desk in his Grosvenor Place office and is one of his key benefactors. Given that the Sunday papers are crawling over anyone who has ever given Fox a penny, it seems Hintze is getting ready for a fight… 

UPDATE: It looks like they are keeping it cosy. Richard Alston the Non-Executive Director of Bells’s Chime Communications (which owns Bell Pottinger,) also sits on the international advisory board of CQS. Bell Pottinger also represent the Sri Lankan government and have worked closely with Liam Fox in the past.

Big Blow For Fox

The Heff, with a seemingly heavy heart, has called for Fox to go:

It is what we now know about what the two men did in the public eye that makes Dr Fox’s position so precarious.

If even some of us who are sympathetic to Dr Fox’s politics feel he now lacks the credibility to do his job, what must his opponents think?

At the moment, he is dying  by inches in public with each new revelation about his behaviour.

Heffer’s assertion comes on the back of another round of dodgy headlines for Defence Secretary. The news that private donors were running their own adviser for Fox in order to by-pass the Civil Service is only going to anger more people. Especially as there is no declaration of interest. Werritty looks set to be interviewed again today by Sue Gray, the Cabinet Office’s Director of Propriety and Ethics. You have to wonder how he will react to being compared to Walter Mitty…

Fox Trashes Werritty

Another key development in the fox-hunt from Joe Murphy at the Standard. He has got the text of “friends of Fox” attempting to trash his bestest friend Adam Werritty. Murphy stresses that he believes this is what Fox told GOD:

“It is clear that Werritty was masquerading as something he was not. He was hanging around and popping up in places, trying to be part of a group. This guy was clearly a Walter Mitty figure.

It’s fair to say that he [Fox] was naive about Adam Adam did arrive in certain places and took advantage of his friendship with Liam. It will be a very different friendship in future.”

If the government are calling you Walter Mitty, Guido doesn’t recommend you go for a walk in the woods any time soon…

Jobs for the Boys

Hats off to Political Scrapbook who have created the snazzy Liam Fox advisor business card creator:

Now you too can open doors around the world with no clearance or accountability…[…]

+ READ MORE +

Fox in Burglary Admission

Despite the fact that the investigation into his activities is now directly hindering his job as Defence Secretary, Liam Fox is still fighting. Instead of giving press conferences in Paris, he is up this morning with new tactics. His old […]

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Boulter Wades In Again: Werritty Loved First Class Travel

Harvey Boulter isn’t the most reliable of witnesses but he raises some intriguing points. He just did an interview with the BBC that could only be described as a hand-grenade. He described Fox’s version of events around their meeting in […]

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Fox and the £100,000 Question

Despite obvious security flaws, saucy innuendo and the potential of government work being done off the books, it’s the paper trail that will decide Fox’s fate. Joe Murphy over at the Standard has been crunching the numbers:

“I’ve done an

[…]

+ READ MORE +



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