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#Farage Clearly Unhappy To Have His Selfish Corruption & Dishonesty Exposed By One Of His Tax Payer Funded Mistresses …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 19/11/2017

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#Farage Clearly Unhappy To Have His Selfish Corruption & Dishonesty Exposed By One Of His Tax Payer Funded Mistresses …
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Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins
Greg_L-W

eMail:
Greg_L-W@BTconnect.com

The BLOG:
https://InfoWebSiteUK.wordpress.com

The Main Web Site:
www.InfoWebSite.UK

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.
The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
their anti UKIP claque in POWER & the NEC

is what gives the remaining 10% a bad name!

000a ukip-025 count.png~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.

Hi,

firstly let us consider that in earlier articles Annabelle Fuller claims to have ceased to be employed via Ukip be that in the EU or elsewhere in 2014, yet I note she most clearly tweets about her EU salary for work for Ukip as follows:

Note the date of this Tweet from the Toxic Tart using one of her many well know aliases!

& clearly her relationship with Farage continues:

The fact that Paul Cahalan had decided to serialise the details of Annabelle Fuller’s own rather dubious story of her long term selfish sexual exploitation by Nigel Farage who heartlessly took advantage of her mental illness and ensured the tax payers paid for both his marital and extra marital sexual exploitation of women using his authority and position to fund it was in fact clear in his first article, which clearly was full of holes relative to the story we know he had known for years, as had so many of us!

We had all tried to publicise Farage’s serial corruption on many levels in our own ways, however although it was widely known so also was Farage’s sociopathic willingness to lie & recourse to costly lawyers at party expense to defend his own dishonesty.

It was the level of widely known corruption that made Farage and his puppets so singularly unreliable as alies in the BreXit campaign ensuring that he would never have a position in the official BreXit campaign – clearly he lost easily as many votes for BreXit as he claims to have attracted.

Even now Farage’s close links and willingness to propagandise for and be paid by Russia are used as weapons, by dishonest remainers, to try to overturn BreXit. The main plank of their argument besides the belief he acted as a conduit for Russia, Assange & Trump’s team in America, being the amount of Russian interference in social media and the 100s if not 1,000s of pro BreXit messages that appear to have been seeded by Russia and their agents.

The argument goes that social media helped BreXit to get a majority, though this overlooks the other corrupt argument of Remainers that the majority of BreXit voters were the more mature (possibly more tuned values and experience), whilst the majority of Remain voters were the younger voters those who had been most heavily propagandised by social media and education both of which are targeted with huge amounts of tax payers’ money squandered by the EU for spin, publicity and propaganda.

The Remain propagandists rather shoot themselves in the foot with their own argument as the EU targets the young vvia social media as it is the younger generations that are the great users of social media – it is thus clear that Russia and the EU target the same market knowing the older voters are far less likely to be on social media and far less likely to be influenced.

Former mistress of Nigel Farage reveals she was one of THREE lovers to rush to his bedside after he escaped death in horror plane crash

  • His mistress of 10 years Annabelle Fuller says staff battled to hide his infidelity
  • She says after the crash aides were sent to keep her out of sight of his wife
  • French waitress Laure Ferrari was another of the women vying for his attention

Pulled from the tangled wreckage of a plane crash in a remote Northamptonshire field, his face swollen and bloody, his spine chipped and ribs broken, things could hardly have been worse for Nigel Farage.

It would later emerge that the then leader of Ukip had escaped death by a matter of inches.

Thanks to a now notorious publicity stunt on polling day of the 2010 General Election, Farage crashed to earth suspended upside down in the shattered cockpit, his head almost scraping the ground.

If that was a miraculous escape, however, Mr Farage’s problems were by no means over.

Because as The Mail on Sunday can today reveal, he would shortly face the arrival of not one but three determined women, all clamouring for his affections and a place by his hospital bedside.

After Nigel Farage's horror plane crash in a field in Northamptonshire in 2010, there was not just one but three women rushing to his aid, explains one of them Annabelle Fuller (pictured)

After Nigel Farage’s horror plane crash in a field in Northamptonshire in 2010, there was not just one but three women rushing to his aid, explains one of them Annabelle Fuller (pictured)

One of them – as she explains today – was Farage’s long-term lover and former political aide Annabelle Fuller, who last week sensationally disclosed she had spent more than a decade as his mistress, before parting company with Ukip amid mental health problems and suicide attempts.

Accusing him of brazen hypocrisy, not just for lying but for breaking his marriage vows despite the party’s strong family values stance, she claimed Farage had instructed her to remain silent about their sexual relationship for the sake of protecting the Ukip cause and Brexit.

Despite her long relationship with a man she came to regard as her mentor, Ms Fuller was by no means the only woman romantically linked to 53-year-old Farage.

Ms Fuller, 36,  said that after Farage was taken to hospital, aides were dispatched to ensure he did not come into contact with his German-born wife Kirsten (pictured), or French former waitress Laure Ferrari

Ms Fuller, 36, said that after Farage was taken to hospital, aides were dispatched to ensure he did not come into contact with his German-born wife Kirsten (pictured), or French former waitress Laure Ferrari

And, as she explains, party workers and officials were all-too-well aware of the fact as they battled to ensure that his illicit encounters did not come to light.

Today, describing the true extent of Farage’s tangled emotional life, Ms Fuller, 36, describes how Farage’s well-briefed aides were even dispatched to the entrance doors of the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, where he was recovering after the light aircraft crash, to ensure she did not come into contact with his German-born wife Kirsten, or French former waitress Laure Ferrari, another woman close to him who has since become his partner.

Not that such rivalries were on Ms Fuller’s mind when, in May 2010, she received a disturbing phone call.

‘Even though our affair was waning, we were still close and I wanted to see him elected,’ she said.

‘A friend rang to tell me about the crash, followed immediately by a party official who said that I should make my way to the hospital as no one else was there.

‘I was shaking with worry by the time I got there. I didn’t even make it inside before a woman who said she was his local aide barred my way.

‘We had never met but she must have been waiting at the entrance because she suddenly rushed out and said: ‘You can’t be here – Kirsten is here. You’ve got to go.’

Pictured is Farage's mistress French waitress Laure Ferrari near her £4million London home

Pictured is Farage’s mistress French waitress Laure Ferrari near her £4million London home

‘I was taken aback and told her I wanted to see him; to check he was okay for myself.

‘I was clearly very upset but she was a big lady and stood her ground.

‘I’m not a confrontational person and there were several TV cameras present, so I didn’t want to make a fuss. I turned around and went home.’

Farage, she says, later called her from hospital and apologised for how she had been treated.

‘I told him I wanted to come and see him and hold his hand but he said it was awkward. I just assumed Kirsten had ordered my ban.’

Some weeks later, Ms Fuller discovered it was rather more complicated and that she had in fact been prevented from entering because Ms Ferrari was inside, crying uncontrollably.

It would later emerge that Farage and Ms Ferrari had met some years previously in a bar in Strasbourg where she was working as a waitress.

She had subsequently found a job in the European Parliament. Now, it appeared, their relationship was more intense.

‘She must have been already nearby to have arrived at the hospital first,’ says Ms Fuller.

‘I’m told that Ukip members were trying to calm her down and move her out before Kirsten got there. They definitely didn’t want me to meet Laure either.’

Nigel Farage emerges from the tangled wreckage of a plane crash in a remote Northamptonshire field, his face swollen and bloody, his spine chipped and ribs broken

Nigel Farage emerges from the tangled wreckage of a plane crash in a remote Northamptonshire field, his face swollen and bloody, his spine chipped and ribs broken

Despite the subterfuge, Ms Fuller maintains Mrs Farage had known about and tolerated her affair with her husband for years.

At one stage, she says, there was something of a truce in their understandably embattled relationship.

Kirsten even took Ms Fuller into her confidence, explaining she had considered moving to Germany with the couple’s two daughters.

The peace did not last. Amid the euphoria of Ukip’s historic gains in the 2014 European elections, where it won more seats than Labour or the Tories, Kirsten humiliated Ms Fuller by having her ejected from Ukip’s celebration party.

In the months that followed, Ms Fuller’s fragile mental health deteriorated, she attempted to commit suicide and she finally decided to leave Ukip.

In September of that year, Kirsten sent a series of damaging text messages to a senior Ukip official – texts, referring to Ms Fuller ‘as a nutter’.

In one, she jokes in response to claims that Ms Fuller plans to write a ‘reveal-all’ book that Ms Fuller knows too much and needs to be ‘killed’.

Farage's former mistress Annabelle Fuller sensationally revealed last week they were together for 10 years

Farage’s former mistress Annabelle Fuller sensationally revealed last week they were together for 10 years

The Ukip official, obviously shocked, responded by warning her not to put things in writing. There was, Ms Fuller insists, no plans to write a book about the affair.

But the strain on the Farages’ 18-year marriage had taken its toll and, earlier this year, the couple announced their split.

The news came amid reports that Ms Ferrari had moved into the politician’s £4 million Georgian home in West London.

Farage later confirmed the relationship. Ms Ferrari is believed to have accompanied him to President Trump’s inauguration in Washington in January.

Today, Ms Fuller feels used and humiliated, saying that, having devoted herself to Farage and Ukip, she has been left with nothing.

But then, she says, she is not the only woman in politics, whether in Westminster or Brussels, who feels the dice are loaded against them.

She is also by no means the first to be drawn into a shady sexual relationship with an older, charismatic man.

‘Whether it is in Westminster or the EU, you have a cause you believe in, a goal to achieve and live off the adrenaline of the roller-coaster ride,’ she says.

‘There is nothing much to do in either Brussels or Strasbourg except eat, drink and fornicate,’ she says.

‘You have got to be very, very ugly, impotent or have some kind of nasty affliction not to have an affair.’

Farage is pictured on the campaign trail for the General Election in 2015 when he ran to be Thanet South's MP for Ukip

Farage is pictured on the campaign trail for the General Election in 2015 when he ran to be Thanet South’s MP for Ukip

Her relationship with the former Ukip leader flourished in this environment because everyone – even those without the conventional good looks and healthy bank balances – was doing the same, she said.

‘What MEPs do have is a killer pension, expense accounts and a budget to hire staff.

Add the heady perfume of political power, chauffeured cars, plush hotels and business class air fares on foreign trips and they become like gods.’

She claims, in fact, that European politics is a hotbed of taxpayer-funded impropriety.

Although her relationship with Farage was consensual, she feels that the conditions are ripe for harassment, with women feared being labelled ‘troublemakers’ if they complain.

Ms Fuller first moved to Brussels in 2004, aged 23, with a long-term boyfriend whom other women would openly flirt with.

Many women sought career opportunities or a well-connected husband. But the men, she concluded, just wanted sex.

‘The casting couch still exists in politics. After work, there were always drinks receptions and parties with bad, warm white wine, and very little food, where older men and young women ended up flirting or in compromised positions,’ she says.

‘Sexual harassment was a natural by-product. It was endemic. Politicians and their male staffers prowled, groped, stalked and harassed with impunity.

They treated women like meat.’ One young secretary, who had been groped by a male MEP, was too afraid to make a complaint, fearing she would be labelled a troublemaker.

‘The men behaving badly do so because they know they will get away with it.

‘It was common knowledge who were the gropers and who were the serial sh*****s, but in the past, those who complained were accused of lying and frozen out.

‘I am not surprised by the sexual harassment complaints coming out of the UK Parliament, just that there have not been more.’

Ms Fuller knows that, without her help, Mr Farage would never have earned his place in history today as a major political player.

‘I created brand Nigel, man of the people,’ she insists. ‘He relied on me, but I feel he kicked me to the kerb when I became a problem.

‘Being a mistress was the worst decision I ever made. It belittled me. It dehumanised me.

‘Teflon Nigel just earned a reputation for being a ladies man – nudge, nudge, wink, wink.’

To view the original of this article CLICK HERE

Here is a Tweet I posted some time before I read Nikki Sinclaire’s article in The Sun:

I don’t believe or have the guts or integrity to apologise to any of the people they have lied to or lied about – I guess we can dream on, they will never emerge from the gutter they are used to even for money from the press betrayal is their style

It is also well worth considering if Nigel Farage has made adequate compensation and a sufficiently public apology to Annabelle Fuller for having exploited his position of power and access to public money to fund her so that he could excercise his sexual domination of this weak minded and deeply disturbed young woman, who clearly seems to suffer from a mental illness which has been apparent to all but the deliberately blind and heartless ever since she first joined Ukip.

Fuller’s mental illness is almost deffinitely a Bi-Polar Disorder made all the more clear by her self harming and frequent cries for help and attention in her many half baked attempts at suicide, who, wishing to commit suicide, would act so publicly in proximity to excellent medical facilities as to seek attention in public toilets in the EU’s premises? Nor would anyone wishing to commit suicide rather than gain attention bodge cutting the arteries in the wrist!

Again I would draw your attention to Farage’s callous indifference that he failed to intercede to obtain sound medical help for this sad figure he used and exploited – one wonders if the only medical attention he would have sought would be to pay for her to have an abortion, or more to the point find a way for her to have an abortion at the tax payers’ expense to save himself from the inconvenience and expense of more children!

Allbeit he did of course pay £1/4 a Million into his off shore tax dodge account on the Isle of Man in the name of ‘Farage Educational Trust’. Just as it would seem he has sought, I hear, to put his assetts/properies overseas into an account in the name ‘Thorn In the side Ltd’ I would assume to not just dodge taxation but to put it beyond the reach of his other exploited tax payer funded staff member Kirsten!

However I do appreciate this is very much hear say and although in character it may well be a detail too far! We must of course be well aware that Farage is not just a proven liar and hypocite but also clearly corrupt so it is unreasonable to expect any denials he may Trump up to be true – he has lied time and time again for 13 years and attacked and villified many of us for telling the truth about him in the past, even going so far as to collude with and condone others seeking to bankrupt and destroy those who sought to expose the truth!

One wonders what Farage plans to do having heard Theresa May’s speech at The Mansion House last night in which she clearly stated Farage and his cronies were involved in the BreXit vote and Russian efforts to interfere with input of cyber expertise, social media and money and despite the 7 meetings the NSA/FBI has had with British authorities, 5 of which degenerated into shouting matches, one wonders when they will force the issue to have arrests and extraditions from Britain of the criminals who colluded with and accepted Russian money, acting also as a conduit for not only Russian money but also influence, cyber expertise, Julian Assange and stolen eMails to interfere with the rigged American elections!

Fortunately Russian attempts to influence the BreXit vote were of no effect as they chose to to support the largely irrelevant Arron Banks and thus his goffer Nigel Farage – neither of whom had much credibility amongst the electorate and you will note for all the £Millions claimed to have been spent by Leave.EU just how few followers they have and for every vote they may have garnered for BreXit I regret they probably lost 2!

All too often Farage & Banks came up in conversation amongst the true BreXit supporters concerned that thgeir interference was likely to ‘cost us BreXit’ – the real damage done by Russian interference was via Julian Assange & such efforts Farage & Banks made in interfereing in the American election that has so undermined the office of POTUS and will explainm the work done by US intel exposing them in the media, which in itself has harmed BreXit.

It is my belief that had Britain been spared the interference of Russian, Banks and Farage and some of the racists and clowns surrounding them the vote for BreXit would have be far far larger.

It is of course ironic that although Banks & Farage had no official role in the BreXit vote they have specialised in self publicity to desperately promote themselves as being in some way instrumental in the outcome – indeed I guess they were instrumental as they did everything within their power to try to prevent the Petition Nikki Sinclaire founded, organised and delivered which led to the debate in the House of Commons & the promise of a Referendum.

It was clearly Nikki Sinclaire and the cross party team she built that delivered the Referendum despite Farage and his claque and the Official Leave Campaign half baked and misinformed as it was were instrumental in the BreXit win.

The greatest irony of all regarding Farage, in this issue, is his bleating about interference in British democracy by the EU and to then listen to him bleating about the interference of George Soros in world affairs, particularly those of the EU! Meanwhile Farage & Banks are posing, posturing and seeking to influence American politics – he is like some commedy character in an African political bedroom farce!

Fortunately no one of any integrity can claim that Russian influence and money or Farage had a significant influence on the BreXit vote. However it is very clear that Banking influences and self interest and Government from all parties with the aid of Civil Servants and a great deal of tax payers’ money together with EU figures and yet more tax payers’ money did a great deal to corrupt the outcome of the vote, propping up the Remain campaign and yet the electorate clearly saw through such attempts to corrupt the outcome all be it the corruption of the vote by Government and the damage done by Farage and his perceived extremism did clearly reduce the Leave vote.

To view the previous revelations from last week CLICK HERE

so finally Nigel Farage is more than somewhat ‘Benighted’ the Teflon coating that has protected Nigel Farage is reaching its end of life and his exploitation of the mental illness of a vulnerable member of his staff Annabelle Fuller has delivered his comeuppance. Few if any of those involved with Ukip were unaware of what soiled and damaged goods the sad little figure was.

Whether it was her complaining to Piers Merchant how the stapler under her on the desk during one of her interludes with Farage had bruised her and pulling her skirt up to show him the intimately placed bruise, or describing a Regional chairman or some such as nothing more than ‘a w**k stain’ on Anthony Butcher’s scurrilous Ukip controlled public Forum.

To round it off, as I was well established at the time as an accurate and honest commentator on matters pertaining to Ukip including her vile behaviour with clear intimations regarding her various positions with Nigel Farage paid for on the Ukip pay roll – she displayed her true character on another public forum by announcing she hoped the cancer I was known to be fighting would kill me soon.

She really is a wretch specimen of humanity without scruples, ethics, integrity or morals. A skim read of her relationship with Farage, for who would want the details, shows the pair of them in their true light.

One has to feel sorry for any decent individual whose path has crossed this toxic inadequate’s path, though it is hard to drum up any sympathy for Annabelle Fuller whatever aliases she uses for her hedonistic self promotion and attention seeking.

For attention seeking that she claimed Nikki Sinclaire was in some way responsible for ruining her life and try to blame her for her own self harming as a way to get attention was more than a bit rich minded that Nikki Sinclaire had merely exposed the well known fact that Nigel Farage was in a long term relationship with his mistress at the tax payers expense whilst funding ‘payoff’ to his wife of some £30,000 a year from the same source.

Then again one notes Fuller’s on off relationship with Jasna Badzak at one time using her as both a confidante and an advisor and in the next breath seeking to blacken her name.

Likewise the foolish behaviour of The Tory MP Andrew Bridged who she claimed had sexually assaulted her when it became clear she had fled his flat having stolen his House of Commons Pass, Parliamentary correspondence and his Blackberry bearing numerous confidential phone details of very senior individuals + messages! She was aprehended by the concierge of the block of flats when she had fallen and bruised her head, noticeably drunk and allegedly without shoes – the assault claims were seemingly dreamed up in her attention seeking mind whilst waiting for the police to arrive – claims that vanished with the light of day (truth) – sadly having dishonestly befouled his reputation in a situation which contributed to his wife’s accrimonious parting of their ways and difficulties over access to his children.

Then of course there was her tissue of lies regarding the story she conspired to publish belittling John West in the media with an utterly implausible cock and bull story about having her laptop stolen having left it in a taxi – yet she filed the story whilst in Morrocco whilst on holiday! To read more of this story CLICK HERE

Then of course there was her corruption of the leadership election to get her paymaster back into power to ensure her income stream, when on tax payers money she was being paid to se4rrvice Farage’s non domestic needs she travelled to various hustings with Farage and ‘worked’ the ladies toilets to badmouth and defame the other candidates claiming for instance that Richard Suchorzevski was a BNP supporter, a bankrupt and homoosexual – a more than somewhat fancifull pack of lies when you consider he was self financed, took a year off work to strengthen Ukip in Wales including firing that useless article Jim Carver and touring Britain to campaign in the leadership election with John Bufton as his campaign manager, meanwhile he was in a relationship with a nursing sister at a leading London hospital and she was West Indian – BNP, homosexual and bankrupt! I think not, but it was the sort of lies that Fuller was prone to peddling – just as were Mark Croucher, David Bannerman, Mick McGough, Denny, and so many of the liars and low lifes at the top of Ukip!

I do believe that for justice to be seen to be done we shall have to relly on Suchorzewski, Sinclaire, West, Bridgen or the like to take legal action against Annabelle Fuller and Farage not only for their defamation but perhaps the EU will see fit to take back the tax payers’ money that Nigel Farage perloined to pay his wife and various mistresses – surely the tax payer can not be expected to pay for the MEPs’ to have sex on the public purse nor provide offices in which to excercise their sexual pecadilloes.

Little wonder the public at large voted for BreXit in disgust at the profligacy & louche behaviour of the EU & its staff be they Commissioners, MEPs, Unelected bloated bureacrats or the parasites who act as riders on the Gravy Train providing sexual favours!

But now clearly the worm has turned, whether merely for money or in spite at being passed over by Farage’s current mistress Ms. Farrari enjoying the perks of her efforts over the last few years now Farage has parted company with his wife and has the £5M property in Chelsea and travel in and out of NSA, CIA, FBI juristiction until they feel there is no more information they can glean by following him in the company of bigger and more valuable fish, then he will no longer be of use as bait but will be thrown to the wolves in his own right!

Farage may well find that ‘Thorn In The Side’ is not as Limited as he may think, when it comes to protection!

To view Paul Cahalan’s original article where Annabelle Fuller confirms Farage’s heartless sexual exploitation of her mental illness & the tax payers CLICK HERE
Regards,

Greg_L-W.

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~
Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins
tel: 44 (0)1594 – 528 337

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#Ukip’s ex MP #Bob_Spink & His Ukip Agent Are On Trial For Fraud & Lies That Corrupted An Election …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 17/11/2017

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#Ukip’s ex MP #Bob_Spink & His Ukip Agent Are On Trial For Fraud & Lies That Corrupted An Election …
~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins
Greg_L-W

eMail:
Greg_L-W@BTconnect.com

The BLOG:
https://InfoWebSiteUK.wordpress.com

The Main Web Site:
www.InfoWebSite.UK

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.
The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
their anti UKIP claque in POWER & the NEC

is what gives the remaining 10% a bad name!

000a ukip-025 count.png~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.

Hi,

interestingly this trial of the failed Ukip MP Bob Spink and his Ukip agent James Parkin seems somewhat arbitarily to have been moved from its planned venue, which as I recall was Basildon, and is now being held out of area at Southwark Crown Court! There seems to have been no reasons given why this fraud case where Bob Spink and his agent are accused of fraud thus corrupting an election – such reasons might have been as it involved National Security or was to be held in full or in part in camera – neither seem likely, we are thus left wondering what strings have been pulled and both how and why!

The article below fails to point out that when standing for election as PCC he was standing on a Ukip ticket!

Ukip’s former MP Bob Spink on trial accused of lying and forging signatures

ACCUSED: Bob Spink

ACCUSED: Bob Spink

A FORMER Dorset county councillor who became Ukip’s first MP is on trial accused of lying to voters and forging signatures.

Bob Spink, 69, allegedly took a “casual and misleading approach” while canvassing and collecting signatures to nominate Ukip candidates ahead of last May’s local elections.

Voters reported seeing “a very large man”, Ukip election agent James Parkin, 38, accompanying Spink collecting signatures, Southwark Crown Court heard.

Dr Spink, who served on Dorset County Council for eight years and was deputy chairman of Poole Conservatives, left Dorset after becoming Conservative MP for Castle Point in Essex. He became Ukip’s first MP in April 2008 after resigning from the Tories, later becoming an independent and losing his seat in 2010.

He lost out in the Essex police and crime commissioner (PCC) elections last year, while his co-defendant Parkin was beaten as a council candidate.

Tom Nicholson, prosecuting, said: “A part of this trial will look at the canvassing methods employed by Dr Spink on the doorstep.”

He added: “Did he use what we would say a casual and misleading approach on the doorstep to obtain signatures?”

None of the Ukip candidates were elected and there is no suggestion that there was anything improper with the 100 signatures obtained by Spink to stand in the PCC election.

Spink denies five counts of submitting false signatures on nomination papers, while Parkin denies six like charges.

The accusations relate to the local election for Castle Point Borough Council in 2016.

Prosecutor Tom Nicholson said: “In short, it is alleged that Dr Spink and Mr Parkin were involved in submitting a number of nomination forms, bearing signatures that had been obtained falsely.”

Jurors heard that prospective council candidates had to secure 10 signatures from local electors, while police and crime commissioner candidates required 100.

Voter Robert Duke discovered his name had been added to a nomination form to his “complete surprise”, the court heard.

“In fact, this signature was a forgery,” said Mr Nicholson.

A complaint was made to police and enquiries revealed Parkin was involved in the form’s completion, the court heard.

Officers then made calls to 128 signatories relating to the other 13 council wards with Ukip candidates. The appeal garnered 96 responses alleging two further forgeries and 26 others claiming they had been misled as to the nature of the document they were signing.

The trial is expected to last four weeks.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~
Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins
tel: 44 (0)1594 – 528 337

Calls from ‘Number Withheld’ phones Are Blocked

All unanswered messages are recorded.

Leave your name & a UK land line number & I will return your call.

‘e’Mail Address: Greg_L-W@BTconnect.com

DO MAKE USE of LINKS,

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I try to make every effort to NOT infringe copyrights in any commercial way & make all corrections of fact brought to my attention by an identifiable individual

 

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Posted in EU, EUkip, GL-W, GLW, Greg Lance - Watkins, Greg_L-W., UKIP | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Degenerate Liars #Farage & #Fuller Flatter Themselves If They Believe They Did Much Beyond Befoul The True Value Of #BreXit …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 14/11/2017

 

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 .
The Degenerate Liars #Farage & #Fuller Flatter Themselves
If They Believe They Did Much
Beyond Befoul The True Value Of #BreXit …
.
~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins
Greg_L-W

eMail:
Greg_L-W@BTconnect.com

The BLOG:
https://InfoWebSiteUK.wordpress.com

The Main Web Site:
www.InfoWebSite.UK

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.
The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
their anti UKIP claque in POWER & the NEC

is what gives the remaining 10% a bad name!

000a ukip-025 count.png~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.

Hi,

Here is a Tweet I posted some time before I read Nikki Sinclaire’s article in The Sun:

I don’t believe or have the guts or integrity to apologise to any of the people they have lied to or lied about – I guess we can dream on, they will never emerge from the gutter they are used to even for money from the press betrayal is their style

It is also well worth considering if Nigel Farage has made adequate compensation and a sufficiently public apology to Annabelle Fuller for having exploited his position of power and access to public money to fund her so that he could excercise his sexual domination of this weak minded and deeply disturbed young woman, who clearly seems to suffer from a mental illness which has been apparent to all but the deliberately blind and heartless ever since she first joined Ukip.

Fuller’s mental illness is almost deffinitely a Bi-Polar Disorder made all the more clear by her self harming and frequent cries for help and attention in her many half baked attempts at suicide, who, wishing to commit suicide, would act so publicly in proximity to excellent medical facilities as to seek attention in public toilets in the EU’s premises? Nor would anyone wishing to commit suicide rather than gain attention bodge cutting the arteries in the wrist!

Again I would draw your attention to Farage’s callous indifference that he failed to intercede to obtain sound medical help for this sad figure he used and exploited – one wonders if the only medical attention he would have sought would be to pay for her to have an abortion, or more to the point find a way for her to have an abortion at the tax payers’ expense to save himself from the inconvenience and expense of more children!

Allbeit he did of course pay £1/4 a Million into his off shore tax dodge account on the Isle of Man in the name of ‘Farage Educational Trust’. Just as it would seem he has sought, I hear, to put his assetts/properies overseas into an account in the name ‘Thorn In the side Ltd’ I would assume to not just dodge taxation but to put it beyond the reach of his other exploited tax payer funded staff member Kirsten!

However I do appreciate this is very much hear say and although in character it may well be a detail too far! We must of course be well aware that Farage is not just a proven liar and hypocite but also clearly corrupt so it is unreasonable to expect any denials he may Trump up to be true – he has lied time and time again for 13 years and attacked and villified many of us for telling the truth about him in the past, even going so far as to collude with and condone others seeking to bankrupt and destroy those who sought to expose the truth!

One wonders what Farage plans to do having heard Theresa May’s speech at The Mansion House last night in which she clearly stated Farage and his cronies were involved in the BreXit vote and Russian efforts to interfere with input of cyber expertise, social media and money and despite the 7 meetings the NSA/FBI has had with British authorities, 5 of which degenerated into shouting matches, one wonders when they will force the issue to have arrests and extraditions from Britain of the criminals who colluded with and accepted Russian money, acting also as a conduit for not only Russian money but also influence, cyber expertise, Julian Assange and stolen eMails to interfere with the rigged American elections!

Fortunately Russian attempts to influence the BreXit vote were of no effect as they chose to to support the largely irrelevant Arron Banks and thus his goffer Nigel Farage – neither of whom had much credibility amongst the electorate and you will note for all the £Millions claimed to have been spent by Leave.EU just how few followers they have and for every vote they may have garnered for BreXit I regret they probably lost 2!

All too often Farage & Banks came up in conversation amongst the true BreXit supporters concerned that thgeir interference was likely to ‘cost us BreXit’ – the real damage done by Russian interference was via Julian Assange & such efforts Farage & Banks made in interfereing in the American election that has so undermined the office of POTUS and will explainm the work done by US intel exposing them in the media, which in itself has harmed BreXit.

It is my belief that had Britain been spared the interference of Russian, Banks and Farage and some of the racists and clowns surrounding them the vote for BreXit would have be far far larger.

It is of course ironic that although Banks & Farage had no official role in the BreXit vote they have specialised in self publicity to desperately promote themselves as being in some way instrumental in the outcome – indeed I guess they were instrumental as they did everything within their power to try to prevent the Petition Nikki Sinclaire founded, organised and delivered which led to the debate in the House of Commons & the promise of a Referendum.

It was clearly Nikki Sinclaire and the cross party team she built that delivered the Referendum despite Farage and his claque and the Official Leave Campaign half baked and misinformed as it was were instrumental in the BreXit win.

The greatest irony of all regarding Farage, in this issue, is his bleating about interference in British democracy by the EU and to then listen to him bleating about the interference of George Soros in world affairs, particularly those of the EU! Meanwhile Farage & Banks are posing, posturing and seeking to influence American politics – he is like some commedy character in an African political bedroom farce!

Fortunately no one of any integrity can claim that Russian influence and money or Farage had a significant influence on the BreXit vote. However it is very clear that Banking influences and self interest and Government from all parties with the aid of Civil Servants and a great deal of tax payers’ money together with EU figures and yet more tax payers’ money did a great deal to corrupt the outcome of the vote, propping up the Remain campaign and yet the electorate clearly saw through such attempts to corrupt the outcome all be it the corruption of the vote by Government and the damage done by Farage and his perceived extremism did clearly reduce the Leave vote.

 

NOW SAY SORRY

Former MEP who sensationally outed Nigel Farage in 2014 for affair with aide demands apology for ‘vilifying’ her and ‘years of lies’

Ex-Ukip MEP Nikki Sinclaire said she had been finally proven right that the former party boss HAD been having an affair with Annabelle Fuller for years

THE FORMER MEP who sensationally revealed Nigel Farage’s relationship with his aide three years ago has demanded an apology from him for “vilifying” her.

Ex Ukip representative Nikki Sinclaire had accused Annabelle Fuller of sleeping with the former party leader – but she was called “callous” and “vindictive”.

Nikki Sinclaire - seen here with former Prime Minister David Cameron - said she had been proven right over the affair
Nikki Sinclaire – seen here with former Prime Minister David Cameron – said she had been proven right over the affair

Yesterday the Mail on Sunday revealed that Ms Fuller, who worked for Mr Farage, said the pair had a “decade-long affair” which was hushed up so it wouldn’t “derail Brexit”.

Ms Sinclaire, who left Ukip in 2010, is demanding a public apology from Mr Farage for accusing her of lying about the affair.

In March 2014 she asked him on the floor of the European Parliament if he thought it was a fair use of taxpayers’ money to employ his wife Kirsten and his “former mistress” Annabelle Fuller.

He replied at the time: “I don’t want to answer that at all” but later said the claims were “cowardly and malicious”.

Annabelle Fuller has lifted the lid on her 'decade-long affair' with Nigel Farage
Annabelle Fuller has lifted the lid on her ‘decade-long affair’ with Nigel Farage

Farage has denied having an affair with the former aide

EPA
Farage has denied having an affair with the former aide

Both had denied there was an affair – but Fuller said last weekend she had been secretly sleeping with Farage – more than 17 years her senior – from 2005 until October last year.

Today Ms Sinclaire told The Sun: “He vilified me for highlighting this as an issue.

“They said I was being malicious, that I was a liar.

“They said I was abusing my parliamentary privilege.

“They’ve denied it for years, and now she’s admitted to it.

“I am demanding an apology off both Nigel Farage and off Annabel Fuller.”

And Ms Sinclaire says there are still “serious questions” to be answered about Mr Farage employing both his wife and his mistress.

“He makes a habit of sleeping with people he employs,” she said.

Nikki spearheaded a cross-party petition to No10 back in 2011 - demanding that the Tories hold a referendum on leaving the EU

Nikki Sinclaire
Nikki spearheaded a cross-party petition to No10 back in 2011 – demanding that the Tories hold a referendum on leaving the EU

The former MEP, who lost her election in 2014, helped campaign for Hillary Clinton last year

Nikki Sinclaire
The former MEP, who lost her election in 2014, helped campaign for Hillary Clinton last year

Ms Fuller had been working for the Ukip boss as his personal communications officer, and helped on his failed MP election campaign in 2005.

And his wife Kirsten Farage has worked as his secretary.

The ex-aide said the tryst drove her to self harm and suicide attempts and caused her to suffer from PTSD and depression.
Ms Fuller said yesterday: “Right from the beginning, lying about the affair was a strategy we decided on.

“We had many conversations about it, even in the past couple of years. He told me I had to keep quiet. I said to him, ‘Do you have any idea how painful it is for me?’, and he would say ‘Yes’.”

Ms Fuller continued: “Nigel and I both knew we had to keep quiet to save Brexit.

Fuller was a trusted Ukip aide who worked for Farage in Brussels

Antonio Olmos
Fuller was a trusted Ukip aide who worked for Farage in Brussels

“We are both liars and hypocrites but the reason I had to lie throughout the years was that I didn’t want Ukip or the cause we were fighting for to be damaged.”

Farage split from his wife Kirsten in February and was rumoured to be living with French politician Laure Ferrari.

Farage said in response to the Mail on Sunday’s article: “At the time of Ms Fuller’s employment the party did not know there was a history of mental illness and other serious personal issues.

“I always tried to help her, recognising that she had ability, and prevented her from being fired on several occasions.”

A spokesperson for Nigel Farage declined to comment.

Annabelle Fuller did not respond to a request for comment.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Here is the Tweet I posted some time before I read Nikki Sinclaire’s article in The Sun:

I don’t believe or have the guts or integrity to apologise to any of the people they have lied to or lied about – I guess we can dream on, they will never emerge from the gutter they are used to even for money from the press betrayal is their style

To read more facts regarding the issues in the above article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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Posted in Annabelle FULLER, EU, EUkip, GL-W, GLW, Greg Lance - Watkins, Greg_L-W., UKIP | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Toxic Tart Demeans Herself To Confirm The Facts We All Knew About The Self Obsessed & Unethical Nigel Farage …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 12/11/2017

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The Toxic Tart Demeans Herself To Confirm The Facts We All Knew About The Self Obsessed & Unethical Nigel Farage …
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Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins
Greg_L-W

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.
The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
their anti UKIP claque in POWER & the NEC

is what gives the remaining 10% a bad name!

000a ukip-025 count.png~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.

Hi,

so finally Nigel Farage is more than somewhat ‘Benighted’ the Teflon coating that has protected Nigel Farage is reaching its end of life and his exploitation of the mental illness of a vulnerable member of his staff Annabelle Fuller has delivered his comeuppance. Few if any of those involved with Ukip were unaware of what soiled and damaged goods the sad little figure was.

Whether it was her complaining to Piers Merchant how the stapler under her on the desk during one of her interludes with Farage had bruised her and pulling her skirt up to show him the intimately placed bruise, or describing a Regional chairman or some such as nothing more than ‘a w**k stain’ on Anthony Butcher’s scurrilous Ukip controlled public Forum.

To round it off, as I was well established at the time as an accurate and honest commentator on matters pertaining to Ukip including her vile behaviour with clear intimations regarding her various positions with Nigel Farage paid for on the Ukip pay roll – she displayed her true character on another public forum by announcing she hoped the cancer I was known to be fighting would kill me soon.

She really is a wretch specimen of humanity without scruples, ethics, integrity or morals. A skim read of her relationship with Farage, for who would want the details, shows the pair of them in their true light.

One has to feel sorry for any decent individual whose path has crossed this toxic inadequate’s path, though it is hard to drum up any sympathy for Annabelle Fuller whatever aliases she uses for her hedonistic self promotion and attention seeking.

For attention seeking that she claimed Nikki Sinclaire was in some way responsible for ruining her life and try to blame her for her own self harming as a way to get attention was more than a bit rich minded that Nikki Sinclaire had merely exposed the well known fact that Nigel Farage was in a long term relationship with his mistress at the tax payers expense whilst funding ‘payoff’ to his wife of some £30,000 a year from the same source.

Then again one notes Fuller’s on off relationship with Jasna Badzak at one time using her as both a confidante and an advisor and in the next breath seeking to blacken her name.

Likewise the foolish behaviour of The Tory MP Andrew Bridged who she claimed had sexually assaulted her when it became clear she had fled his flat having stolen his House of Commons Pass, Parliamentary correspondence and his Blackberry bearing numerous confidential phone details of very senior individuals + messages! She was aprehended by the concierge of the block of flats when she had fallen and bruised her head, noticeably drunk and allegedly without shoes – the assault claims were seemingly dreamed up in her attention seeking mind whilst waiting for the police to arrive – claims that vanished with the light of day (truth) – sadly having dishonestly befouled his reputation in a situation which contributed to his wife’s accrimonious parting of their ways and difficulties over access to his children.

Then of course there was her tissue of lies regarding the story she conspired to publish belittling John West in the media with an utterly implausible cock and bull story about having her laptop stolen having left it in a taxi – yet she filed the story whilst in Morrocco whilst on holiday! To read more of this story CLICK HERE

Then of course there was her corruption of the leadership election to get her paymaster back into power to ensure her income stream, when on tax payers money she was being paid to se4rrvice Farage’s non domestic needs she travelled to various hustings with Farage and ‘worked’ the ladies toilets to badmouth and defame the other candidates claiming for instance that Richard Suchorzevski was a BNP supporter, a bankrupt and homoosexual – a more than somewhat fancifull pack of lies when you consider he was self financed, took a year off work to strengthen Ukip in Wales including firing that useless article Jim Carver and touring Britain to campaign in the leadership election with John Bufton as his campaign manager, meanwhile he was in a relationship with a nursing sister at a leading London hospital and she was West Indian – BNP, homosexual and bankrupt! I think not, but it was the sort of lies that Fuller was prone to peddling – just as were Mark Croucher, David Bannerman, Mick McGough, Denny, and so many of the liars and low lifes at the top of Ukip!

I do believe that for justice to be seen to be done we shall have to relly on Suchorzewski, Sinclaire, West, Bridgen or the like to take legal action against Annabelle Fuller and Farage not only for their defamation but perhaps the EU will see fit to take back the tax payers’ money that Nigel Farage perloined to pay his wife and various mistresses – surely the tax payer can not be expected to pay for the MEPs’ to have sex on the public purse nor provide offices in which to excercise their sexual pecadilloes.

Little wonder the public at large voted for BreXit in disgust at the profligacy & louche behaviour of the EU & its staff be they Commissioners, MEPs, Unelected bloated bureacrats or the parasites who act as riders on the Gravy Train providing sexual favours!

But now clearly the worm has turned, whether merely for money or in spite at being passed over by Farage’s current mistress Ms. Farrari enjoying the perks of her efforts over the last few years now Farage has parted company with his wife and has the £5M property in Chelsea and travel in and out of NSA, CIA, FBI juristiction until they feel there is no more information they can glean by following him in the company of bigger and more valuable fish, then he will no longer be of use as bait but will be thrown to the wolves in his own right!

Farage may well find that ‘Thorn In The Side’ is not as Limited as he may think, when it comes to protection!

Farage’s mistress breaks her silence: Political aide reveals sexual encounters in MEP offices in the European Parliament only last year and how he told her to keep quiet or risk derailing Brexit

  • Annabelle Fuller says she and Farage had a sexual relationship dating from 2004
  • She was a speechwriter and trusted aide who worked for Farage in Brussels 
  • Fuller claims she had sexual encounters European Parliament offices last year
  • She says the affair drove her into depression, self-harm and suicide attempts

Nigel Farage has systematically lied about an affair with a vulnerable former aide spanning more than a decade, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

The former Ukip leader is accused of breathtaking hypocrisy by his former lover, who claims she was told to keep the relationship secret at all costs – to help save Brexit.

In an explosive interview, Annabelle Fuller, once a speechwriter and trusted adviser to the party and its leader, says she and Farage, a married man more than 17 years her senior, had a sexual relationship dating from 2004 until October last year.

Farage, a Member of the European Parliament, has himself spoken of the ‘betrayal’ of family values in British society. In a series of devastating admissions about their time together, Ms Fuller discloses:

  • Sexual encounters in MEP offices in the European Parliament as recently as last year
  • A secret love letter in which Farage declares his devotion to her with ‘heart and body
  • That the affair helped propel her into depression, self-harm and suicide attempts
  • That Farage’s wife Kirsten – now estranged – was behind Ms Fuller’s dramatic ejection from a Ukip celebration party in 2014.

Ms Fuller’s decision to speak out is all the more remarkable as both she and Farage have repeatedly dismissed rumours of a liaison. Farage has described the claims as ‘malicious and cowardly’.

Within the party, however, knowledge of the relationship appears to have been widespread. One MEP, speaking on condition of anonymity, said: ‘It wasn’t just a fling or a one-night stand – he was thinking about leaving his wife for her. I have spoken to Nigel about the relationship in the past and know Annabelle and Nigel were still involved sexually until late last year.

‘Everyone in the party knew they were having an affair.’

It is also a relationship starkly at odds with Ukip’s consistent promotion of family values.

Today, in a perceptive and at times troubling account of their deception, Ms Fuller describes how the affair helped drive her into mental illness and life-threatening self-harm before a successful course of therapy. She believes that only by telling the truth will she be able to put her life ‘back on track’.

‘Right from the beginning, lying about the affair was a strategy we decided on,’ she says.

‘We had many conversations about it, even in the past couple of years. He told me I had to keep quiet. I said to him, ‘Do you have any idea how painful it is for me?’, and he would say ‘Yes’.

‘Nigel and I both knew we had to keep quiet to save Brexit. We are both liars and hypocrites but the reason I had to lie throughout the years was that I didn’t want Ukip or the cause we were fighting for to be damaged.

‘He said, ‘They will use anything they can to stop this, they will use anything they can to stop me. We are going up against the Establishment here. They will come after you.’ ‘

Although the relationship was consensual, Ms Fuller believes Farage should have taken more responsibility for his actions.

She describes the relationship as grossly inappropriate, particularly in recent years when, she says, she was in a state of deepening mental illness, later diagnosed as post-traumatic stress.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, a close member of her family expressed anger at the way events played out, saying: ‘Nigel has acted appallingly with regard to Annabelle. In 2005, he seemed to care for her but by last year he was treating her as an afterthought. Despite her nearly committing suicide, he still wanted her to be his sexual partner as late as last year. He is a complete narcissist and I’m pleased Annabelle can finally leave him in the past.’

Annabelle Fuller began working for Farage after completing a master's degree in international relations

 

Annabelle Fuller began working for Farage after completing a master’s degree in international relations

There was a time when Annabelle Fuller was a highly regarded member of the Ukip team; someone who, at the height of her career, would advise Farage, brief the media and write articles for national newspapers under her boss’s name.

Today, she works behind the bar of a country pub near Bath.

It has taken a year of therapy to reach the point where she can speak openly about a relationship which began in 2004 in Brussels, where an up-and-coming Nigel Farage was a Member of the European Parliament. Then 23, Annabelle, who had just completed a master’s degree in international relations, had started working as a Ukip parliamentary researcher.

‘I was introduced to Nigel in the second week of the job and he was polite but cool,’ she recalls.

‘Looking back, I don’t recall an immediate spark of attraction on either side. To me, he was just another middle-aged man in a suit.’ After work, like hundreds of others, she would end up in one of the bars around the Parliament building, the kind where Farage held court. And she found herself drawn to the older, charismatic politician. Soon, the two were spending a lot of time together.

‘He was fun, with a wicked sense of humour,’ she says.

‘He had the best jokes and easily the most interesting political stories. I loved listening to him. I was captivated by his worldliness.’

For several months, the friendship remained platonic, with Farage something of a father figure. The vulnerable young woman – with a teenage history of bulimia, concerns about body image and self-esteem – came increasingly to rely upon him.

‘He took me into his confidence about work and party matters and would often ask for my advice. I was young but I was bright and I was eager to get stuck in.

‘I did research for him – advising him and briefing MEPs on how they were voting. I also helped with his speeches and parliamentary amendments. Our first kiss took place in Brussels in 2005. It was on my forehead. He was just saying goodnight, but it felt very comforting. It didn’t feel improper.

‘Our relationship grew very slowly over several months. After a while, he took me into his confidence – personally and politically.’

Farage had been with his wife, German-born Kirsten, since 1999, but he told Ms Fuller that it was a marriage in name only.

‘He said that it was an unhappy relationship and had been for some time. He told me the marriage was not a real one.’

Then, in April 2005, Farage asked Ms Fuller to work on his – as it would prove – unsuccessful General Election campaign in Thanet South, Kent, as a volunteer.

As their relationship grew, Farage told her it had to remain a secret but they were a 'proper couple' and  the Ukip leader moved into her flat in the Maelbeek area whenever he was in Brussels

 

As their relationship grew, Farage told her it had to remain a secret but they were a ‘proper couple’ and  the Ukip leader moved into her flat in the Maelbeek area whenever he was in Brussels

‘I was flattered. Nigel visited every couple of days while we campaigned and sometimes stayed overnight in a hotel in Broadstairs.’

One evening, Farage invited a group to dinner at his hotel after a day of canvassing. As the evening went on, just three of them remained – Farage, Ms Fuller and one other person.

‘Nigel offered us a sofabed to sleep on because there were no taxis, but I was the only one to take up the offer,’ she recalls. ‘I knew what would happen if I stayed and I wanted it to. When we got upstairs I took one look at the room and said, ‘but there’s no sofabed,’ and we both just laughed.’

It was not, perhaps, the most romantic encounter.

‘I told him I needed something to change into and he produced a white T-shirt from his suitcase. Then I went to the bathroom, took off my make-up and used his toothbrush. When I came back into the bedroom he was in bed wearing a white T-shirt and white Y-fronts. I got in and said ‘budge-up’. It was very English.

‘It was gentle. Our clothes came off in the dark. He said, ‘you’re so beautiful’. We drifted off to sleep in each other’s arms.’ The following morning, he was up early, as ever.

‘He asked how I was, and said, ‘Do you regret it?’ I said no and he said neither did he and that my a*** had looked amazing in the moonlight.’

The relationship grew, but as it did so, the terms became clear: Farage told her it had to remain a secret.

‘He said he wanted me to go into a relationship with my eyes wide open. That he really liked me but he warned me that if people found out they would make my life hell.

‘I was already committed. I knew what we had was very special. I was in love. I was happy.’

From then on, she says, they were a ‘proper couple’ and Farage moved into her flat in the Maelbeek area whenever he was in Brussels.

‘He kept clothes and some shoes there. We still went out with others as a group and I think everyone knew by then that we were an item.’

For a while, Ms Fuller happily played the part of a surrogate wife, organising his life, both domestic and professional.

‘He was rather messy and left wet towels on the floor for me to pick up every morning. He could also be very absent-minded at times.’

Much later in the relationship, for example, he complained of earache while attending the 2014 party conference in Torquay.

‘I found out it was because he had left a broken Q-tip stuck in his ear for days,’ she says.

He was never too absent-minded for one important task, however.

In a letter to  Fuller, Farage said: 'I only wish that I had been free for you. With all my heart and body. Love Nigel

 

In a letter to  Fuller, Farage said: ‘I only wish that I had been free for you. With all my heart and body. Love Nigel

‘He was religious about polishing his shoes,’ she says.

‘And he seemed to have an awful lot. He told me he usually did the job himself on a Sunday.’

For a while, she was happy to remain a mistress, but as time passed her feelings changed.

‘In those early days, he was my reason for getting up in the mornings. Whenever Nigel left to go back to England, it was horrible and I was desolate.

‘He couldn’t even call me on the phone because he said he was with his family. It was very hard for me to know that he had another life.

‘Kirsten knew he was seeing me because someone in the party told her. I used to ring the home in Kent and she would hang up on me, or I could hear her hand the phone to Nigel with an acerbic ‘it’s her’.’

Growing increasingly depressed by her position as ‘the other woman’, Ms Fuller says she started to self-harm.

‘I started to cut myself some months into the relationship because I couldn’t articulate how I felt. When I told Nigel, he was devastated and blamed himself. He begged me to stop and said that he loved me.’

In the summer of 2006, Ms Fuller moved back to Britain to work in Ukip’s London press office where, although she still struggled with the clandestine nature of the affair, the two continued as lovers.

On November 3, her 25th birthday, Farage gave her a diamond pendant as a token of their feelings for each other. When that was stolen, he paid for a sapphire and diamond replacement.

But by the autumn, Ms Fuller decided to end the relationship and told him as they went for a walk on Beachy Head in East Sussex.

‘I was quite stand-offish with him and said that it wasn’t working. I didn’t want to be the other woman any more. I loved him but I wanted a proper relationship.’

He said he understood, but that his children were his priority.

A week later, she received a letter from Farage – dated November 25, 2006 – which she still keeps.

‘No one will ever love, understand or care for you the way that I do,’ it reads. ‘I adore you and the bond of friendship that we have shared. What I dread is not being close to you… I fear that this may not go away for many years.’

Pleading with her to take care of herself, he signed off the letter with: ‘I only wish that I had been free for you. With all my heart and body. Love Nigel x’.

She says: ‘I was angry. He was telling me he loved me and I wanted it to be a clean break.

‘I wanted a shot at a normal life. It was the first time he had declared his feelings so openly. But it was too little too late. I had to end it for me and for him but I know it hurt him very badly. We kept in touch because I could not imagine him not being in my life.’

She embarked on a new relationship, but this foundered. And by December 2007, she was back in a sexual relationship with Farage – which continued even when she quit the party in the autumn of 2008 to work with military charities in the UK.

‘I’d hoped to make a fresh start but even then I found I couldn’t cut the ties to him. He was the only person I could rely on.’

Besides, she found that she missed the excitement of politics and, in 2010, she asked Farage if she could go back and work for him, helping his successful campaign to become leader of the party, before working as his press aide.

At Christmas, he bought her a striking blood-red Vivienne Westwood coat from Harrods.

On her 25th birthday, Farage gave her a diamond pendant as a token of their feelings for each other. When that was stolen, he paid for a sapphire and diamond replacement.

 

On her 25th birthday, Farage gave her a diamond pendant as a token of their feelings for each other. When that was stolen, he paid for a sapphire and diamond replacement.

By now, however, there was a further complication. Farage had met a French woman called Laure Ferrari, 16 years his junior. (For years, Farage denied they were together, although in recent weeks his aides have confirmed the relationship, as first reported in The Mail on Sunday.)

Ms Fuller says she and Farage kept their relationship strictly professional between 2010 and 2012, however the sex resumed from 2013 onwards – only this time she felt there was a more sordid aspect to the liaisons.

‘He used to ask for hand massages and say he had all the stress in his hands. I used to give him them and we would talk and sometimes he would say, ‘how about here’, pointing down at his trousers.’

Then, in March 2014, came a bombshell intervention on the floor of the European Parliament when then Ukip MEP Nikki Sinclaire used parliamentary privilege to allege that Ms Fuller was ‘Farage’s mistress’, a claim he refused to answer immediately.

He later branded her action ‘cowardly and malicious’.

‘I have spoken to every national newspaper on this issue and the answer remains the same as it was in 2006,’ he said. ‘The answer is no.’

In May 2014, Ukip caused a minor earthquake by winning 24 seats in the European elections, beating both Labour and the Conservatives, a result which left Farage and his colleagues euphoric.

For Ms Fuller, however, it would prove a turning point.

Although she had worked on the election campaign, she was ordered to leave a celebration party near St James’s Park in Central London.

‘I was told by one of Nigel’s security staff that I had to leave on the orders of Kirsten Farage and that she would have me dragged out by my hair if I didn’t go,’ she says. ‘So I did, so as not to cause a scene. It was the culmination of how utterly cut off I was. I felt ashamed, useless and alone.’

She says the humiliation helped trigger a suicide attempt, the first of four dangerous episodes of self-harm in the course of the next few years. ‘I went home and slit my wrists and burnt myself with a cigarette repeatedly on my arm.

‘I went to hospital after a friend called an ambulance.’

Even so, the sexual encounters with Farage would continue.

‘He once turned up at my house in Wiltshire in 2015, a baseball cap pulled down over his eyes,’ she says. ‘He wanted sex. I told him no. But as usual Nigel was very insistent. We didn’t end up having full sex, but I did end up feeling like a hooker after he left.’

And when he propositioned her in an MEP’s office in Brussels in the spring of 2016, she once again accepted. ‘He came in and shut the door. He was lying on the sofa, we were talking and he said he was horny.

‘Very explicitly, he said, ‘I’m so stressed’ and asked me to give him a hand massage, which was always followed by me performing a sex act on him. It was over and done with quickly. At that point I was beyond caring.’

The last encounter took place in Strasbourg on October 4 last year. Again he entered the office when she was alone. ‘He gave me a kiss. I wanted affection. And I did as he asked.

‘But I felt disgusted with myself. The next day I learnt the EU was investigating some expenses and I flipped. That combined with the Nigel situation left me feeling that life was pointless. So I cut my wrist in the ladies’ toilet of the European Parliament and ended up in hospital in France.’

Throughout this time, she says, the pressure to maintain the lie became unbearable – the more so since they had been ‘outed’ on the floor of the European Parliament.

‘Nigel said we could keep it out of the media if both of us kept denying it and warned that it would be much worse for me if it came out.

‘I know we had many conversations about it in 2015 and 2016 when we were standing in my garden in the West Country. He told me we must keep any controversy out of the headlines until after Brexit.

‘The other month someone called me damaged, and that’s how I feel. A stupid girl.

‘I feel used and discarded. Now, I want to tell the truth so that I can claim my life back.

‘I’m fed up with living in the shadow of my former self. I’m tired of being ashamed of who I am. I’m not vain enough to think ‘He couldn’t help himself,’ but I do think it was up to him to not to get involved with me.

Last night, Mr Farage declined to confirm or deny that he had had an affair with Ms Fuller. In a statement he said: ‘At the time of Ms Fuller’s employment the party did not know there was a history of mental illness and other serious personal issues.

‘I always tried to help her, recognising that she had ability, and prevented her from being fired on several occasions.’

In his book, The Purple Revolution: The Year That Changed Everything, Farage credits a teacher at Dulwich College for instilling in him a rule for life, ‘the 11th commandment: don’t get caught’.

Today, that commandment lies shattered. And Farage, Ms Fuller says, has only himself to blame.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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We need to talk about #Russian_Money its Effect On #Farage #Ukip & Democracy …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 07/11/2017

 

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Posted by:
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Greg_L-W

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The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
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is what gives the remaining 10% a bad name!

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Hi,

We need to talk about Russian money….

Worldwide
We need to talk about Russian money….
J.J. Patrick photo
One denial from Russian television network RT leaves us with even more questions over Russia’s state influence on UK politics and a trail of Kremlin money. So far, eight public officials are known to have received £9,000 in Russian state funds and Farage is earning a mystery £60,000.

We know that RT is a state actor. A Russian TV channel directly funded by Vladimir Putin, and the content of which is strictly controlled as part of Russia’s foreign office apparatus.

A fee from RT is a direct payment from the Kremlin.

We also know that key UKIP figures including Nigel Farage are tied to the Kremlin but have either denied or declined to respond to questions around being paid to appear on RT. Farage himself was even knighted on Sam Delaney’s News Thing, a flagship show on the channel.

RT responded to questions by saying they did not pay people themselves, but could not answer for independent production companies.

Because of this single, almost uninteresting line of response we can now expose a number of British public officials being paid Kremlin money to assist a state actor, and delve into the changing fortunes of those linked to UKIP.

“In some sense, not having our own foreign broadcasting is the same as not having a ministry of defence. When there is no war, it looks like we don’t need it. However, when there is a war, it is critical…when Russia is at war, we are, of course, on Russia’s side…to make an alternative channel that shares information unavailable elsewhere in order to “conquer the audience” and expose it to Russian state messaging.”

In the words of RT’s Editor-in-Chief, Margarita Simonyan: “In some sense, not having our own foreign broadcasting is the same as not having a ministry of defense [sic]. When there is no war, it looks like we don’t need it. However, when there is a war, it is critical.”
She added that “when Russia is at war, we are, of course, on Russia’s side,” adding that “RT’s goal is “to make an alternative channel that shares information unavailable elsewhere in order to “conquer the audience” and expose it to Russian state messaging.”

RT and Simonyan are closely tied to top Russian Government officials, especially Presidential Administration Deputy Chief of Staff Aleksey Gromov, who reportedly manages political TV coverage in Russia and is one of the founders of RT. Gromov oversees political coverage on TV, and he has periodic meetings with media managers where he shares classified information and discusses their coverage plans.

The Russian Government sets rating and viewership requirements for RT and, since it receives budget from the state, it must complete tasks given by the state. RT news stories are written and edited “to become news” exclusively in RT’s Moscow office.

RT hires or makes contractual agreements with Westerners with views that fit its agenda and airs them on RT. Some hosts and journalists do not present themselves as associated with RT when interviewing people, and many of them have affiliations to other media and activist organizations.

“RT cryptically refer to “independent production companies”, who are of course in turn paid by Russia Today, who are paid by the Kremlin. If you checkout some of the members declared interests and payments at Westminster, you’ll find that anyone who appears on Russia Today receives a payment from a company called: Studio Sixty Billion”

Exploring the extensive and murky ties between UKIP and the Kremlin, questions were put to both Gerard Batten and Nigel Farage, on the topic of direct payments from RT. Batten denied ever having been paid an appearance fee and Farage did not respond.

RT however did respond, saying: “RT never paid either of them for their appearances. We cannot comment on whether any compensation was provided by independent production companies.”

One such production company is Studio Sixty Billion, where RT presenter of the show Sam Delaney’s News Thing is registered as the director.

One researcher in the field contacted Byline after the UKIP article, saying: “RT cryptically refer to “independent production companies”, who are of course in turn paid by Russia Today, who are paid by the Kremlin. If you checkout some of the members declared interests and payments at Westminster, you’ll find that anyone who appears on Russia Today receives a payment from a company called: Studio Sixty Billion, who are based near London bridge/Southwark in London. They seem to be quite fond of promoting the bizarre, chaotic and surreal, there’s some frankly bizarre assange stuff theyve [sic] made. They produce programmes for RT too.”

“Much like the Kremlin does in Russia (hyper-normalisation) to confuse people and make them hanker for stability,” they added.

“Studio Sixty Billion were contacted this morning and were asked if their production budgets came direct from RT for RT content, and if RT had correctly asserted that they as the independent production paid guests as part of that budget allocation. The company spokesperson said: “I’m afraid I can’t help you on this, you’ll have to find that information elsewhere.”

Studio Sixty Billion, previously Studio 60 Billion, is now registered in Borehamwood and was incorporated on the 22nd of July 2015 as a £1 limited company.

It was originally registered at Unit 438, Metal Box Factory in Borough, London, and changed the address in March 2017.

Sam Delaney became sole director in July 2016 and Companies House records show it was set up as a mailbox style company, with Delaney owning £5,000 in shares at the 13th of November 2015.

The company accounts for the period ending in July 2016 show net assets of £187,163 and shareholder’s funds of £218,640, with £5,000 in share capital shown as called up at incorporation – Delaney’s shares.

Overall, the balance sheet is healthy.

Studio Sixty Billion were contacted this morning and were asked if their production budgets came direct from RT for RT content, and if RT had correctly asserted that they as the independent production paid guests as part of that budget allocation. The company spokesperson said: “I’m afraid I can’t help you on this, you’ll have to find that information elsewhere.”

RT do clearly allocate a budget to the shows they produce and broadcast, and their content and finances are directly managed at a state level. Because of international investigations and known facts this means Studio Sixty Billion is acting for the Kremlin to help “conquer the audience and expose it to Russian state messaging.”

This also means the guests are directly exposed to a Kremlin asset and unknown human contacts – potentially from intelligence services, receive funds direct from a state actor, and are assisting the Kremlin with their foreign operations.

“using the search facility within the UK’s Parliament website, it immediately returns other occasions where declared payments from a state actor have been made to serving British officials.”

On a cursory search of the terms “MP register of interests Studio Sixty Billion”, three results immediately appear at the top of the search return.

David Davies, MP for Monmouth, lists two payments from Studio Sixty Billion in his register of financial interests for two appearances on Delaney’s News Thing.

The first declared fee was £750 for an appearance on the 22nd of December 2016, and included off-stage preparation time. The second appearance was on the 22nd of March 2017, again with a fee of £750 and a longer period of ‘preparation time’.

Nigel Evans, MP for Ribble Valley, lists two payments from Studio Sixty Billion in his register of financial interests, also for two appearances, and both paid at £750. On the 17th of November 2016 and the 21st of April 2016, Evans lists the payments as from Delaney’s company but notes the purpose of both as “appearing on ‘Russia Today’.”

Former MP for Rochdale, Simon Danczuk, lists two payments of £750 from Studio Sixty Billion in his own register of interests. Both fees, for appearances on the 10th of October 2016 and the 24th of February 2017, were paid to Danczuk Media Ltd.

In total, this shows £4,500 pounds of directly attributable Kremlin state funds paid direct to British MP’s over the years 2016 to 2017.

However, by using the search facility within the UK’s Parliament website, it immediately returns other occasions where declared payments from a state actor have been made to serving British officials.

“Lord Prescott responded to a query on the declared interests saying: “I’ll have to check with my secretary because they do all this admin stuff. I went on there a couple of times I think but when I found out it was a Russian thing I haven’t been on since.”

Lord Prescott shows an entry in his register which reads: “interest deleted 18/01/2017

Guest on ‘Sam Delaney’s News Thing’ programme for RT UK (26 November 2015); fee and travel expenses paid by Studio Sixty Billion.”

A second entry reads: “Interest deleted 18/01/2017 Guest on ‘Sam Delaney’s News Thing’ programme for RT UK (14 January 2016); fee and travel expenses paid by Studio Sixty Billion.”

A third: “Interest deleted 15/06/2017 Guest on ‘Sam Delaney’s News Thing’ programme for RT UK (3 June 2016), fee, travel and hotel expenses paid by Studio Sixty Billion.”

Rosie Duffy, MP for Canterbury, records: “12 October 2017, received £500 from Russia Today (Studio Sixty Billion, Unit 438, Metal Box Factory, 30 Great Guilford Street, London SE1 0HS) for an appearance on News Thing on 28 July 2017. Hours: 3 hrs. (Registered 19 October 2017)”

Mike Freer, MP for Finchley and Golder’s Green, records: “Payments from Studio Sixty Billion, 16 Short’s Gardens, London WC2H 9AU: 4 October 2016, received £1,000 for TV appearance and preparation. Hours: 1.5 hrs. (Registered 06 October 2016)”

Johnny Mercer, MP for Plymouth, Moor View, records: “16 December 2015, received £1,000 from Studio Sixty Billion, 16 Short Gardens, London WC2H 9AU, for filming of a television programme. Hours: 3 hrs. (Registered 07 January 2016)”

Above this entry, Mercer records being paid only £600 by the Daily Mail for four hours work, an amount he specifically states was given away to charity.

David Lammy, MP for Tottenham, declares: “Payments from Studio Sixty Billion, 16 Shorts Gardens, London WC2H 9AU: 1 December 2015, received fee of £1,000 for appearance on a TV panel show. Hours 2 hrs. (Registered 07 January 2016)” and “28 January 2016, received fee of £1,000 for appearance on a TV panel show. Hours 2 hrs. (Registered 12 February 2016)”.

During the same period, Lammy was paid between £350 and £500 for appearances of similar duration on the BBC.

Lord Prescott responded to a query on the declared interests saying: “I’ll have to check with my secretary because they do all this admin stuff. I went on there a couple of times I think but when I found out it was a Russian thing I haven’t been on since.”

“They’re all over the world poking their noses in everyone’s business,” he added.

While the exact fees paid to Lord Prescott are unknown, this initial search of parliamentary records shows that 8 British officials have declared payments from a state actor in the last few years, totalling £9,000.

This has also exposed to them a Kremlin-managed environment for a period of time, during which intelligence services were presented with opportunities of physical access to them and their belongings.

“During the 2010 to 2014 period alone, the Guardian have previously documented 17 appearances by Farage on RT, escalating over time. UKIP insiders have alleged he was being paid £2,000 per appearance during this period, which would have totalled £34,000 and would have made up the bulk of his 2014 net assets.”

Danczuk is not the only official to run media payments through a limited company.

Nigel Farage has his own, Thorn In The Side Limited, registered at Companies House.

It is known that Farage has declared his media activities in Europe to bring in over £5,000 since 2010.

While he declined to answer questions as to whether he had been paid by RT, and whether his own appearance fee was £2,000 as alleged by UKIP insiders, the company accounts are revealing.

Farage is the sole director of the company, first registered in 2011 in Essex.

The balance sheet of the first trading year shows a nominal amount of income, which ties into his declaration in the EU parliament register of interests. He held £9,737 cash at the bank in the period ending May 2012 and owed £6,448, leaving him £3,289 in shareholders funds.

By the 31st of May 2013, the accounts were drastically different. Cash at bank had risen to £62,825 and net assets to £41,227.

By the 31 of May 2014, the finances had grown again. Cash at bank stood at £76,945 and net assets to £57,200, while debts had decreased from £21,548 to £19,745.

By 2016, the net assets had risen to £61,871.

During the 2010 to 2014 period alone, the Guardian have previously documented 17 appearances by Farage on RT, escalating over time. UKIP insiders have alleged he was being paid £2,000 per appearance during this period, which would have totalled £34,000 and would have made up the bulk of his 2014 net assets.

In 2014, the Daily Mail briefly pursued an investigation into Nigel Farage’s company, concluding: “by using Thorn In The Side as a personal service company, he will have only paid £9,097.60 in corporation tax, and a further £1,687.50 on a £7,500 he took as a dividend, taxed at 22.5 per cent.

This will have presented a saving of £11,097.93 on an income tax bill. Mr Farage could then draw the money out as income more slowly, limiting his tax liability. He would be taxed on the money when he draws it later.”

“He used to declare outside earnings on his register of members interests for journalism of €500- €1,000 and lecturing fees of €1,001- €5,000 a month. It is not clear what Mr Farage is actually paid for, but he regularly appears on TV and radio and writes in newspapers, although not all publications pay for articles,” they added.

Further examining Farage’s most recent declaration of interests in the EU, dated 2017, shows he has substantial income from two distinct revenue streams.

“This allows us to accurately estimate that Farage has an annual income of at least £180,000 on top his MEP salary and expenses, at least £60,000 of which comes from unknown sources.”

He declares “broadcast contracts” as a level 4 income, meaning they are valued at “more than EUR 10 000 gross a month.” This will include his LBC show and work on Fox News.

Separately, he declares occasional income under the description “Political and current affairs commentator” as a level 3 income, meaning the work is valued “EUR 5001 to EUR 10 000 gross a month”.

This allows us to accurately estimate that Farage has an annual income of at least £180,000 on top his MEP salary and expenses, at least £60,000 of which comes from unknown sources.

As yet, Farage has not responded to questions as to whether he has been paid fees by Studio Sixty Billion, what for, how often, and how much he has earned from them.

“you’re just looking for a fucking smoking gun mate.”

Studio Sixty Billion’s Ben Rigden made a further comment for the company, saying: “I know what you’re up to. We’re contracted to make shows for RT like any other production company would be. We have a budget from RT and we make the show. They don’t have anything to do with our guests or writers.”

When asked about the MP’s declared payments, he said: “Check your OFCOM rules, I don’t have to talk about who we pay or how much. Whether MP’s declare it is their business.”

When asked if he had ever paid Nigel Farage and how much, he said: “We’re just an independent contractor operating within the rules, you’re just looking for a fucking smoking gun mate.”

He was right.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~
Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins
tel: 44 (0)1594 – 528 337

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Posted in EU, EUkip, Farage, GL-W, GLW, Greg Lance - Watkins, Greg_L-W., UKIP | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Lets Talk About #Nigel_Farage His Clique & Their Claque …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 06/11/2017

 

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Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins
Greg_L-W

eMail:
Greg_L-W@BTconnect.com

The BLOG:
https://InfoWebSiteUK.wordpress.com

The Main Web Site:
www.InfoWebSite.UK

~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.
The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
their anti UKIP claque in POWER & the NEC

is what gives the remaining 10% a bad name!

000a ukip-025 count.png~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

.

Hi,

We Need To Talk About Nigel…

J.J. Patrick Worldwide
We Need To Talk About Nigel...
J.J. Patrick photo

Flamboyant politician, media spokesperson, bad boy of Brexit. Kremlin asset. People are waiting for suitcases full of cash but the truth is what the truth is: something which has been staring us in the face for years.

Russia 101:

While we are now living in the wake of a complex hybrid offensive, an Alternative War which saw Russia deploy a new range of psychological and cyber weapons with the assistance of far-right relationships cultivated over years, this is not a blockbuster movie.

There have been indictments in the US and more will come while, in the UK, we see a long-term pattern of fluffed action being repeated – we’re currently responding to an act of war, as defined within NATO, with a Culture Committee and the inadequate system of fines provided by the ICO and the Electoral Commission.

However, there will be no sudden revelation. No photographs of those involved in compromising positions with escort girls swimming in pools of Roubles.

The most we will ever see is a contaminated crime scene, so it’s time for a reality check. Russia 101, for the sake of everyone.

“Without even referring to The Moscow Rules directly, the appropriate way to conclude here is to paraphrase Fleming’s Goldfinger which nods to them: “Once is an accident. Twice is a coincidence. Three times is an enemy action.”” 

Russia has never cared for finesse because they have never needed it. They know full well that we know what they did, but they know our responses are bound in rules, whereas their actions are not. This isn’t a case of boxing against someone with one arm tied, this is a heavy-weight fighting a toddler. Russia regards the CIA as ‘Boy Scouts’ and their opinion of Britain is, in essence, that we are little more than a troop of Beavers. Russia taunts and mocks and dares because it knows it holds the cards and always has.

What Russia cares about is you not discovering exactly how they did it, from espionage to poison. The more muddied the water, the better, because it means they may be able to use the same method another time.

Putin’s Kremlin was built upon the KGB and the blood of organised crime and they began a cleanup operation at each stage of success. So what we are left with is a bland, forensic investigation which we do not have the domestic capability to effectively investigate.

At least not at a state level, because the stakes for a government are simply too high. Even if they proved it beyond doubt, they are bound by the realities of a disheveled, inadequate defence and a dance of skeletons which would turn from closet-shaking rattles to an earth-quake fit to finish the job Guy Fawkes once failed to do.

If the Whips can take down a cabinet with a small spreadsheet, imagine what the best pro-active foreign intelligence service in the world would have amassed in the way of Kompromat over the years.

So the only response to come is the one hamstrung in part by the crucially successful efforts of Russian disinformation: the media, now marred by the endless yells of Fake News.

But people like me are what we have, and people like us are going to continue to do our best to bring you what trace evidence remains. Journalists are one of the few things Putin’s Kremlin fears because we are not bound by the rules of the Boy Scouts, we are apolitical, and the public interest is the only thing we serve.

This is why journalism conferences in Putin’s Russia are graveyards. If the truth can’t be killed, those telling it can be.

The Useful Idiots:

A useful idiot has long been defined as: “a propagandist for a cause the goals of which they are not fully aware, and who is used cynically by the leaders of the cause.”

The phrase has made it into the Oxford Dictionary Of Euphemisms and has been the subject of much debate in the Dictionary of Espionage – it is derived from the term Useful Fool, attributed without official records to Lenin. Michael Prell, writing in his Underdogma, commented: “The term Useful Idiot is largely attributed to Vladimir Lenin, who reportedly used it to describe Soviet sympathizers among the ranks of Western media and intellectual elites.”

Mona Charen, a right-wing writer with a strongly Russian narrative, wrote about Lenin’s alleged origin of the term, writing: “Lenin is widely credited with the prediction that liberals and other weak-minded souls in the West could be relied upon to be ‘useful idiots’ as far as the Soviet Union was concerned.”

“Nigel Farage, former UKIP leader and MEP, Arron Banks, UK donor and backer of Leave.EU, and Andrew Wigmore, a Belizian diplomat and endeavour partner of both, are the best known of the Useful Fools in the United Kingdom.”

“Though Lenin may never have actually uttered the phrase, it was consistent with his cynical style. And… liberals managed, time after time during the Cold War, to live down to this sour prediction, she added.

All this sounds familiar these days.

And we do have some specific examples of Useful Idiots. They occupy well-known positions in our daily politics and were instrumental in the Brexit vote before tying themselves more publicly with the Trump administration.

Nigel Farage, former UKIP leader and MEP, Arron Banks, UK donor and backer of Leave.EU, and Andrew Wigmore, a Belizian diplomat and endeavour partner of both, are the best known of the Useful Fools in the United Kingdom.

All of them are currently under investigation or scrutiny in some way or another, in the both the United States and the United Kingdom – whether it be by the FBI under the Mueller inquiry, the EU over funding frauds, the police because of Breitbart payments to UKIP, the ICO over Leave.EU’s data use and sharing arrangements, or by the Electoral Commission over their receipt of services from controversial data firm Cambridge Analytica and Banks’s own finances.

They are deeply embedded in the establishment of fake and alternative news, proactively working with Steve Bannon – senior in the Trump Administration, Breitbart, and Cambridge Analytica – Russia’s state-led outlets RT and Sputnik, and have even created their own platform, Westmonster.

Alongside this, they are also connected the use of their own social media bots and Russia’s, to push their messaging – which also ties them to InfoWars – and will become central in the growing calls for inquiries into Russian interference in Brexit.

Currently they have doubled-down against any allegations of impropriety, suggesting that the Russia angle is a dead-end which will vindicate them, while more closely aligning themselves with the Russia outlets and the Russian state.

These are predictable games, and play precisely to everything we know about Russian tactics for denial. However, it’s apparent these particular useful fools are not only cocky but justifiably so: they also understand Russia 101 and the likelihood of escaping a headline-friendly bombshell which will undo them completely.

Thankfully, however, useful idiots are not always as exceptional as they may believe. Time and time again, in fact, we have seen they are ultimately disposable from the point of view of those in Russia who utilise them.

Because of this, it is much easier than it may first appear to make a conclusion as to whether or not they have been working with Russia, even in the absence of smoking guns.

The full statement by Yakovenko, for example, and its use by Leave.EU as part of their official response to allegations of Russian collusion indicates a relationship which extends beyond accidental or a simple matter of mutual appreciation.

It also carried a veiled message, highlighting a distaste for journalists which is recognisable not only in terms of Russia itself but reflected in the rhetoric of Britain’s useful idiots many months before the public and parliamentary mood reached the critical mass of now.

And, of course, the connections to Russia for both UKIP and Banks himself have run deeper than just this for some time. By proxy bringing more Useful Idiots into the equation.

As with all things relating to espionage, however, nothing is ever as simple as it may appear. If it was, we wouldn’t need spies in the first place.

Banks is married to Ekaterina Paderina, known as Katya. She came to the UK in the 1990s from Eastern Russia on a student visa and in November 1998 met and married a retired merchant sailor twice her own age. With the authorities suspicious of a sham marriage, she faced deportation and turned to Michael Hancock, the Liberal Democrat MP for Portsmouth South at the time. Despite her marriage lasting just three months, she successfully obtained the right to stay and married Banks in 2001.

Hancock denied assisting Paderina with her visa application, but her then-husband made a statement that: “The immigration authorities suspected it was a sham marriage, but then a restaurant owner who had a Russian girlfriend offered to introduce us to Mike Hancock and he said he would help get everything sorted.”

He states they visited the MP at his constituency office in Albert Road, Portsmouth, where: “Mr Hancock asked me if I thought there was any future in the relationship but he agreed to help.”

“I came home once and discovered Mr Hancock in my conservatory with Katia. They looked very cosy and I was very suspicious. I told him I didn’t like him visiting my wife when I was not there and he became very defensive and angry,” he added.

Hancock was eventually dismissed from the Liberal Democrats in 2014, but not before a curious case involving another Russian had been played out.

One of Hancock’s parliamentary aides, Katia Zatuliveter – a Russian national – and her friend were questioned by authorities at Gatwick Airport on a return flight from Croatia in August 2008. She had first met the MP in Strasbourg while working for the Council of Europe and began working for him the same year.

Between 2008 and June 2010 Zatuliveter was the secretary to the All-Party Group on Russia chaired by Hancock, which gave her not only access to MPs but a legitimate reason to be in communication with the Russian state. Westminster sources have previously stated she was, in effect, running the Russia group herself – which defined its purpose as to “maintain regular contact with the Russian Duma and Federal Council; to facilitate political exchanges between the two countries.”

According to The Times, reporting at the time of Hancock’s removal from the committee: “Members of the group were concerned at Mr Hancock’s position after he argued for a softer response to the murder of Alexander Litvinenko, the former KGB officer who was poisoned with radioactive material in London in 2006.”

Despite Hancock’s claims nothing untoward was occurring, Zatuliveter was identified as a potential spy by MI5 when routine surveillance linked her to another person with close links to the Russian Embassy in London. The associate was suspected of working for the SVR, Russia’s foreign intelligence service. She was subsequently arrested on suspicion of espionage and detained pending deportation.

Her arrest came just as the Illegals Program, a spy ring of female sleeper agents, was uncovered in the United States. A scandal which involved a confirmed Russian agent and then British Citizen, Anna Vasil’yevna Chapman – who pled guilty to conspiracy to act as a foreign agent and was deported and also banned from returning to the UK afterward. On her return to Russia, she gave evidence against a KGB double-agent and went on to become a Russian media presenter. The spy ring was targeting the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton – details now more pertinent than ever.

Through 2010 and 2011, Hancock robustly defended Zatuliveter, but former Council of Europe’s colleagues went on record that through the 2000s Hancock would come to their regular private gatherings with a series of young Russian and Ukrainian women. Witnesses saw his assistants using the computers of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, as password protected system to which they knew the credentials.

During the fallout Hancock denied claims by Mátyás Eörsi, a Hungarian parliamentarian and member of the group, that he had failed to declare all of his visits to Russia, claiming he couldn’t count them up as his passport had “fallen into the sea”.

Eörsi also stated in August 2010: “He [Hancock] is the most pro-Russian MP from among all of the countries of western Europe. You just have to read his speeches. When it came to debates on Putin, freedom of the media or the war with Georgia, Michael always defended Russia. Among the Liberal bloc in Strasbourg we were all stunned by his position. According to him, Russia really is a fully-fledged democracy.”

The eventual case against Zatuliveter collapsed and the tribunal ruled that her relationship with Hancock – which lasted four years – had been “enduring and genuine on both sides.” Her case hinged on a diary, produced on the first day having been “forgotten” about which described her affections as simply immature.

The details, however, are fascinating. She first met Hancock in April 2006, while chaperoning an EU delegation, and eventually succumbed to his requests for her company when he returned to Moscow in June 2006. She started working for him as an aide and eventually passed a vetting-procedure granting her a parliamentary pass in 2008.

When pressed on her intentions, she claimed love at first sight, and when pressed on Hancock’s value to the Russian Intelligence Services due to his position, she said: “I don’t know how you imagine a Russian girl would have heard of the defence select committee or what it could be.”

It appears she may have had some idea, as the hearing uncovered she had affairs with two other men in influential positions, one which pre-dated Hancock by two years.

In 2004, chaperoning another Russia-EU conference, she met a Dutch diplomat referred to as “L”. While he did ask her to dinner, on a whim she caught a train to Moscow to meet him, admitting to the Tribunal that she did not tell him she was coming. After they had sex and he had to leave the room for work, she insisted on staying so, in her own words, the diplomat “took everything he possibly could from the room” before leaving.

When her affair with Hancock came to an end in April 2010, Zatuliveter began a relationship with “Y”, a member of NATO staff she met in London. During MI5 questioning, she was shown a picture of “Y” and asked bout electronic correspondence “attempting to extract information” from him about a previous NATO at which then US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright was present.

“They said they couldn’t care less because I had already extracted information from him and…the harm had already been done,” she told the tribunal, explaining she had called off the affair.

On the balance of probabilities, the panel concluded she wasn’t a spy and she was freed.

Oleg Gordievsky, a former KGB-colonel who ran the agency’s London bureau before defecting told the Daily Mail during the scandal that Zatuliveter was a “very conscientious worker for the Russian Intelligence Services who passed them the most important military secrets. She caused more damage than all other KGB agents put together. She was the strongest and most useful KGB agent for the last 30 years.”

He concluded she was more effective than Anna Chapman and added: “It is big. For four years she has been making copies of military documents and bringing them to the [Russian] embassy.”

While Banks has always been highly dismissive of any links to Russian spies – and indeed mocked them, not least by buying Katya a private number plate which reads XM15SPY – times have changed and, in fact, have led him through apparent disdain to engender his own direct links to the Russian embassy.

This is where the obfuscation falls away like scales, but before explaining this, UKIP itself – to which Banks is the major donor – has married itself to the Kremlin in other ways during the period spanning from Zatuliveter’s arrest to the present day.

Gerard Batten is a UKIP MEP, first elected in 2004. A founding member of the right-wing party, he was the first Party Secretary from 1994 to 1997.

Batten was appointed a member of the European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Security and Defence in July 2004, and shortly afterward was also appointed UKIP’s official spokesman on Security and Defence. He has been a vocal opponent of the European Arrest Warrant and a supporter of both Julian Assange and Vladimir Bukovsky.

Batten is a curiosity, not least because his name comes straight up in an internal UKIP email from 2010, in which he is asked to comment on the Hancock/Zatuliveter scandal.

In of itself, this is expected – a suitably qualified politician commenting on a story – but one source close to UKIP’s leadership, who wishes to remain anonymous for security reasons, recalls: “Zatuliveter has met with Batten too. Both of them in his office, in a closed-door session.”

It is unclear whether this meeting took place before or after her period in the detention centre.

The sender of the email, Gawain Towler – once the party’s chief press officer and at the time a senior aide to Nigel Farage – was later the subject of his own scandal when, in 2013, he accidentally sent an SMS to one news reporter saying: “They have called and I expect a snapper and a female journalist (of some form of ethnic extraction) at Piccadilly,” while referring to Kiran Randhawa, a British Asian journalist.

Batten’s special interests in Russia are long-standing, as are his direct connections to Russian figures and controversies. He has been close to KGB figures for a number of years and became linked to the Romano Prodi scandal relating to the attempted 1981 assassination of Pope John Paul II.

In April 2006, Batten went on record to identify Alexander Litvinenko as the former FSB officer identifying Prodi as the KGB’s “man in Italy” and publicly called for an inquiry. Specifically, he gave evidence that Litvinenko had been informed by FSB deputy chief General Anatoly Trofimov numerous KGB agents were active among Italian politicians. A Brussels based news outlet, EU-Reporter, ran a story at the time, also saying: “another high-level source, a former KGB operative in London, has confirmed the story”.

At the time Prodi was running for re-election amidst a full inquiry into Soviet infiltration of Italy during the cold war led by Senator Paolo Guzzanti. Interestingly, the commission was disbanded in without any concrete evidence given to support the original allegations of KGB ties to Italian politicians. One man, Mario Scaramella, was arrested in late December 2006 and charged with libel and illegal weapons’ trade, after wiretaps of phone calls between Scaramella and Senator Guzzanti were published by the Italian press. The recordings showed the pair had planned to discredit various political opposition figures through claiming they had ties with the KGB.

Despite Batten’s call, Prodi won the election with his centre-left party and, as Litvinenko was dying later that year, the new parliament instituted a commission to investigate the Guzzanti inquiry as it had “manipulated the KGB story for political purposes.”

Scaramella met with Litvinenko just before the former spy met his two murderers.

Since gaining asylum in the UK in 2001, Litvinenko had moved relatively freely, despite an alleged plot to assassinate him which has been documented as being initiated in 2002. He worked with British and European security services identifying Russian state and criminal activities.

Just over six months after being publicly outed by Batten, Litvinenko fell ill when he was poisoned with polonium-210. He died on the 23rd of November 2006 and following an eventual public inquiry, which concluded in January 2016, it was formally recorded that Litvinenko’s murder was an FSB operation, probably personally approved by Vladimir Putin.

“Batten’s is a story of contradiction and complication. Because of his position, he was well-informed on the risks to any constituent exposing KGB operations.”

On hearing the news, Batten told BBC News: “I’m shocked. I’m very saddened at Alexander’s death. He was a very likeable man. I got on very well with him on the occasions I met him and spoke to him on the telephone. I think that what’s very concerning about this is the accusation that the Russian secret services were involved in this. I had a conversation at the weekend with Mario Scaramella, the man that Alexander was meeting in the sushi bar on 1 November, and Mario was himself in fear of his life. He was going off to hospital to have a check to make sure that he wasn’t contaminated in any way, and what he told me was one of the reasons he came over to speak to Alexander is because another ex-KGB contact that he had warned him that his life was in danger, Alexander’s life was in danger, and that two other named people were also in danger.”

Batten, squarely, found himself in the middle of what appears to have been a dangerous and bitter war between factions of the former KGB, aligned with central players, and his stances are peculiarly at odds which some of the activities against Russian mafia crime in the EU. Namely the European Arrest Warrant, which was the centrepiece of his relationship with Julian Assange.

Litvinenko had also befriended a number of Chechen exiles while in London and even converted to Islam in solidarity. (He was buried in a lead-lined coffin with Muslim rites).

Batten has also set himself at odds with Islam, however. One example is in his essay published in the November/December 2006 edition of right-wing circular Freedom Today that: “Successive governments have refused to accept the threat posed to our society by Islamic fundamentalism and extremism and to take the necessary measures to meet it head-on. We should esteem our own values of freedom, free speech, and liberal secular democracy and start defending them. One of the most important reasons that extremism has flourished in Britain is because of the funding it receives from abroad.”

Batten’s is a story of contradiction and complication. Because of his position, he was well-informed on the risks to any constituent exposing KGB operations.

Did Batten out Litvinenko for reasons we do not yet understand? appears to be a question that has never been asked, yet it seems pertinent given the circumstances.

On a plain reading, Litvinenko’s murder timeline appears directly related to his naming in the Prodi affair.

But the curiosity does not end with one of the most famous murders in British history.

Pavel Stroilov worked as an aide to Batten and co-authored The Inglorious Revolution with him – a book about “how membership of the European Union has subverted the English Constitution and how the people can set themselves free” which was published in 2013.

Stroilov is described in the book’s bio as a “Russian journalist, historian and political exile living in London. He has smuggled secret Soviet documents to the West and was granted political asylum in London.”

Stroilov’s story is odd. Nonsensically odd.

“According to the article, Stroilov has 50,000 documents on his computer. He claims that these are unavailable to researchers, a claim that the article repeats. In fact, the vast majority of these documents have been available to researchers for at least the past decade.”

He claims to have fled Russia in the early 2000s with 50,000 previously unseen documents from the Gorbachev Foundation archives. How he came to work for Batten appears to be his connection to be through his friend, Bukovsky. However, despite numerous right-wing articles there really isn’t much on Stroilov – which you may expect as he stole some of the KGB’s prized history.

Academics are generally dismissive too.

Writing a cutting riposte for the LSE to Stroilov’s 2010 coverage in a right-wing publication City Journal, an outlet of the conservative Manhattan Institute, Artemy Kalinovsky exclaimed bewildered exasperation. “According to the article, Stroilov has 50,000 documents on his computer. He claims that these are unavailable to researchers, a claim that the article repeats. In fact, the vast majority of these documents have been available to researchers for at least the past decade. I worked in the Gorbachev Foundation Archives (GFA) in 2006, 2007, and 2008, and was able to see the available notes taken at Politburo meetings, Chernaiev’s diary, various papers written by Gorbachev aides, and some memorandums of meetings and telephone conversations (memcons) between Gorbachev and foreign leaders. The only time documents were withdrawn was when they were being prepared for publication by the GFA; even then, after explaining that I was working on a PhD thesis and did not want to spend my entire life in grad school, I was given access to the documents. The one exception is some of the memcons of conversations with foreign leaders – for reasons that are not quite clear, many of these were kept from researchers. Even the memcons, though, have been included in the excellent volumes the GFA has been releasing over the past several years, including one on the German question, several editions of the Politburo notes, and a series approaching 15 volumes of what seems to be the GFAs entire collection. Cherniaev’s diary, one of the treasures of the GFA’s collection, has also been published.”

Stroilov’s own agenda is even more telling in his own words.

Being interviewed for a piece in Romania’s Hot News in 2009, Stroilov entered into a now quite familiar diatribe, telling reporters about “what Gorbachev called Common European Home. And Francois Mitterrand called it European Confederation.”

He outlines what appears to be a plan for Russia to integrate with Europe peacefully, saying: “It was based on the old Cold War idea of ‘convergence’: that is to say, Soviet Union and East Europe were to become more and more democratic, while West Europe would be more and more socialist. And when it finally merged, it would result in a kind of moderate socialist utopia. The United Socialist Europe, that’s basically what it was. Gorbachev and Mitterrand were talking all the time of how to make their Common Socialist European Home. The transformation of the European Community went wrong because, of course, the Soviet Union collapsed and Russia never entered the European integration. But the plan has a lot of impact even on today’s Europe, because basically, the EU is a moderately socialist structure of this kind.”

Reading the article, it’s hard to grasp what Stroilov’s views are, other than he is against Russia/EU integration.

This is supported further by another odd publication, originally released in 2004, entitled: “EUSSR: The Soviet Roots Of European Integration,” which he co-authored with Bukovsky.

The publication is one of the most blatant pieces right-wing propaganda you are ever likely to find and does not hide its agenda from the outset. The introductory note has to be seen to be believed.

Under Chapter 4, which is headed “Other Forces From Hell,” the core message of the book crystallises. It reads: “all the talk of opposing US influence in Europe, all the pretence at creating European counterbalance to the remaining superpower sounded more like propaganda than a real goal to the EU.”

The reasons for the UKIP affiliation of both of these Russian nationals are clear. They appear to openly detest the European Union.

Chapter 6 is best described as the justification of Vladimir Putin’s Russia and the book reads like a supporting work for Dugin’s Future of Geopolitics.

And this, in part, explains why Stroilov was able to take thousands of documents from a KGB archive and leave the country untouched: his agenda suits that of the Kremlin, and the myth of theft appears to have been little more than a smokescreen providing legitimacy.

Documents seen also show that he had no real objections to turning to RT for media coverage for Batten’s causes and UKIP insiders have claimed Stroilov hung around London’s embassy and even brought FSB into UKIP’s offices regularly. All of which would be peculiar for a man on the run from the Russian state for the theft of secrets.

But again, their story is one of contradictions.

Bukovsky’s history paints him as an anti-communist dissident, and he even stood against Putin as a candidate in 2008, however, despite being deported from Russia in the 1970s, he never lost his citizenship and was pardoned by Yeltsin in the 1990s. But then there is Assange.

Most recently, Bukovsky has come to the attention of British police and is being prosecuted for Paedophilia offences.

“Much as with Litvinenko’s connections to UKIP, we are left with more questions than we are answers, and Batten is placed front and centre in another Russian security service conflict situation.”

In 2015, the Crown Prosecution Service and Police charged Bukovsky with sexual offences after prohibited images were found on his computer. His trial commenced in December 2016 in Cambridge, where it transpired he was accused of 11 counts of “making and possessing indecent images of children,” charges he denies.

According to the prosecution case, Bukovsky started downloading images in the late 1990s, claiming he was conducting “research into the issues of control and censorship on the internet”, and told investigators “his initial curiosity turned into a hobby, rather like stamp-collecting”. Bukovsky has described the accusations as “absurd” and claims the tip-off about the images was passed through Europol from Russian security services.

The trial was halted after one day as Bukovsky was hospitalized with pneumonia, though it is rescheduled for the 19th of January 2018. A bizarre addition to the case is that Bukovsky lodged a legal claim for £100,000 in defamation damages against the CPS, a case which failed in October 2017.

Both Bukovsky and Stroilov also jointly penned a book allegedly based upon Litvinenko’s personal diaries and writings. In it, they told about the friendship between Litvinenko and oligarch Boris Berezovsky, who was eventually found dead with a ligature around his neck – a story which generated wild rumours of him being executed by Western security services as he was about to expose a plot to oust Putin. Another story which makes no sense when set in context.

Much as with Litvinenko’s connections to UKIP, we are left with more questions than we are answers, and Batten is placed front and centre in another Russian security service conflict situation.

UKIP insiders have also claimed Batten once asked Berezovsky for £250,000 during a gathering at his Surrey mansion, but the request was not met with a positive response.

It’s clear, even for someone outside of the security services, that Batten presents a somewhat unique combination of intelligence risk and opportunity. A perfect hub for the focus of Russian intelligence services, whether wittingly or otherwise. A near perfect Useful Idiot – a category into which Bukovsky may have once fallen and expired, but Stroilov does not appear to.

Pavel Stroilov is not a question which can be answered yet, but his story is anomalous enough to warrant a well-justified feeling something is not quite right.

And this leads us to the relationship between Bukovsky, Batten, and Assange.

Before beginning with the Assange issue, however, it is prudent to state the obvious: Julian Assange remains the accused in a Swedish rape investigation and the only reason he has not been subject to due process is that he went into hiding under diplomatic protection.

Though this is repeatedly misrepresented, and Assange himself even claimed a ‘victory’ when the European Arrest Warrant was withdrawn, the simple truth has always been publicly available from the Swedish prosecutor herself: aside from Assange being arrested and interviewed, all other evidence has been gathered.

On the 19th of May 2017, the lead prosecutor Marianne Ny said: “Almost 5 years ago Julian Assange was permitted refuge at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, where he has resided ever since. In doing so, he has escaped all attempts by the Swedish and British authorities to execute the decision to surrender him to Sweden in accordance with the EU rules concerning the European Arrest Warrant. My assessment is that the surrender cannot be executed in the foreseeable future.”

According to Swedish legislation, a criminal investigation is to be conducted as quickly as possible. At the point when a prosecutor has exhausted the possibilities to continue the investigation, the prosecutor is obliged to discontinue the investigation.

“In our judgment, Mr Assange is on the facts before this court “accused” of the four offences. There is a precise description in the EAW of what he is said to have done. The extraneous evidence shows that there has been a detailed investigation.”

“At this point,” Ny continued, “all possibilities to conduct the investigation are exhausted. In order to proceed with the case, Julian Assange would have to be formally notified of the criminal suspicions against him. We cannot expect to receive assistance from Ecuador regarding this. Therefore the investigation is discontinued.”

“If he, at a later date, makes himself available, I will be able to decide to resume the investigation immediately,” she added.

Also, considering the case has never been to trial, the High Court decision in July 2011 which rejected Assange’s appeal against the application of a European Arrest Warrant set an important precedent as regards the use of condoms and conditional consent. A precedent which did not bode well for Assange’s proposed defence in Sweden.

In fact, reading the full judgment reduces a number of the myths surrounding the Assange case to ashes, along with one of the pillars of his defence to the warrant: that he had not actually been accused of an offence.

“In our judgment, Mr Assange is on the facts before this court “accused” of the four offences. There is a precise description in the EAW of what he is said to have done. The extraneous evidence shows that there has been a detailed investigation. The evidence of the complainants AA and SW is clear as to what he is said to have done as we have set out. On the basis of an intense focus on the facts he is plainly accused. That is. [sic] as Lord Steyn said, decisive,” the judges wrote.

“As it is common ground that a criminal investigation about someone’s conduct is not sufficient to make a person an accused, a further way of addressing this broad question is to ask whether the case against him has moved from where he can be seen only as a suspect where proof may be lacking or whether there is an accusation against him supported by proof…Plainly this is a case which has moved from suspicion to accusation supported by proof,” they added.

“In England and Wales, a decision to charge is taken at a very early stage; there can be no doubt that if what Mr Assange had done had been done in England and Wales, he would have been charged and thus criminal proceedings would have been commenced. If the commencement of criminal proceedings were to be viewed as dependent on whether a person had been charged, it would be to look at Swedish procedure through the narrowest of common law eyes. Looking at it through cosmopolitan eyes on this basis, criminal proceedings have commenced against Mr Assange. In our view therefore, Mr Assange fails on the facts on this issue,” the judgment concludes.

Under Swedish law, a matter of procedure is a final interview before final charges are made. So, rather than a suspect, Assange is, in fact, the accused. He has never won anything, just evaded justice and is also wanted by the British police, because he was bailed to live at a fixed address under the proceedings with a bond set at £200,000 and left the address for the Ecuadorian Embassy.

A further appeal by Assange was rejected in May 2012 as being without merit.

 

Working together, Batten and Bukovsky involved themselves in Assange’s legal case as “Interveners”, instructing UK lawyer Paul Diamond.

Leaked emails have shown UKIP had been actively supporting Assange since 2011.

The Farage-led Europe of Freedom and Democracy group even tabled a motion attacking “the possible abuse of the European Arrest Warrant for political purposes,” when the law was used to trigger Assange’s extradition over Swedish rape allegations and, on RT, Batten labelled the extradition proceedings against Assange as “legalised kidnap.”

One new email seen shows Batten submitting questions from a Dr Mezioso to both the European Council and Commission on the 15th of February 2011 and Stroilov, replying, nudging Batten towards RT for press coverage of the intervention.

“I look forward to future revelations about what western governments are up to.”

Batten has appeared frequently on RT, the Russian state television broadcaster and UKIP insiders claim he was consistently paid a substantial fee – something Batten denies. His declaration of interests document lodged with the European Parliament does not feature any additional income declarations.

In one document about the Assange case, written by Batten and dated Tuesday the 11th of January 2011, he stated: “I have come to the view our own government is the enemy of our own people.”

“I look forward to future revelations about what western governments are up to.”

It seems the stage for UKIP’s developing role in later world events had been set for a long time and Batten wasn’t a lone voice.

By the 4th of February, Batten was seeking a meeting with Assange via his lawyer, Mark Stephens, writing: “So far, UKIP London has been only British political party to openly support Mr Assange fight against EAW and his freedom of speech, and we would very much like to continue doing so.”

Leaked minutes of the meeting on the 10th of February first report by Business Insider, show Batten promised to table a motion in support of the WikiLeaks founder in the European Parliament and that UKIP offered a joint video press conference in Brussels. The Mezioso email came five days later.

By the 21st of February 2011, UKIP’s Steven Woolfe was setting up a donor event, the UKIP City of London Business Forum on the 23rd of March 2011, at which Batten and Stephens spoke out on the Assange issue. One email from Farage’s assistant confirms he also spoke with Stephens at the event.

Batten attended Assange’s 40th Birthday in July 2011 and UKIP insiders claim Farage was also present.

While Batten had clearly placed UKIP in the ideal position for the exploitation of Useful Idiots, Farage took the opportunity and capitalised upon it, eventually unravelling himself by the time 2017 came along.

Following a ‘dump’ of CIA data on the WikiLeaks site in March 2017, security analysts began to draw conclusions that Assange’s site was, in fact, a full-blown Russian interest.

“the Office of the Director of National Intelligence had already confirmed there was “high confidence that Russian military intelligence relayed material to WikiLeaks.””

Dr Andrew Foxall, director of the Russia Centre at the Henry Jackson Institute openly stated: “Wikileaks has secret Russian intelligence but hasn’t disclosed anything remotely sensitive about Russia. He [Assange] has taken a consistently pro-Russia stance.”

Though Assange denied the claims, speaking from the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, Foxall added: “The documents contained 75,000 redactions. These were codes that would also affect Russia’s security because some of the data was relatively fresh, it is unlikely it had been in the pipeline for a while. And Assange’s team is small. The logical conclusion is that the data was given already redacted. This was the work of a sophisticated team, and it fits entirely into a pattern of behaviour demonstrated by Russia in the past.”

In fact, in January 2017, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence had already confirmed there was “high confidence that Russian military intelligence relayed material to WikiLeaks.”

During the 2016 Trump campaign, Roger Stone was accused by John Podesta of having prior knowledge of Wikileaks publishing his private emails which had been obtained by a hacker. In fact, before the leak, Stone tweeted: “It will soon the Podesta’s time in the barrel,” and five days prior to the release he did it again, writing: “Wednesday Hillary Clinton is done. #Wikileaks.” Breitbart News, the Robert Mercer and Steve Bannon disinformation channel, also published a subsequent denial by Stone, in which he claimed he had no advance knowledge of the Podesta e-mail hack or any connection to Russian intelligence.

The thing was, I had already established a link between Russia, disinformation, Wikileaks, Trump, and Brexit, and found clear evidence from intelligence agencies that Wikileaks was known as a Russian operation.

Stone became a gift which kept on giving, and he presented none other than Nigel Farage.

During a speech on the 8th of August 2016, Stone said: “I actually have communicated with Assange” and referred to an “October surprise” coming via the Wikileaks site. He also stated that, while he had never met or spoken to the site’s founder, the pair had a “mutual friend” who served as an intermediary.

The same day the speech was given, Stone was tweeting about a dinner he had with Nigel Farage, who was, of course, seen visiting Assange in March 2017 and had always refused to give reasons for the meeting.

“It transpires, however, Farage had indeed met Yakovenko. On the 13th of May 2013, according to the Russian Embassy’s website.”

In May 2017, Farage changed tack and told Germany’s Die Zeit newspaper he visited the Ecuadorian Embassy for “journalistic reasons, not political reasons” before cutting the questions short, saying: “It has nothing to do with you. It was a private meeting.” What set him off, according to the reporters, was when they directly asked if he was working for Russia.

In response to questions about his 2013 meeting with Russian Ambassador Yakovenko, which he initially claimed not to remember, Farage began ranting at the reporter: “I think you are a nutcase! You are really a nutcase! Brexit is the best thing to happen: for Russia, for America, for Germany and for democracy.”

It transpires, however, Farage had indeed met Yakovenko. On the 13th of May 2013, according to the Russian Embassy’s website.

Again, Farage had appeared repeatedly on RT, eventually being knighted on the channel in 2017 and offered his own show – which he turned down. UKIP insiders, however, claim Farage was paid up to £2,000 per appearance – something he has not responded to and RT deny, in a fashion.

However, Nigel’s own declaration of interest in the European Parliament shows he has been raking in over £5,000 a year as a media commentator since 2010. Though the total amount is not specified, this gives us a baseline of at least £35,000 over the last seven years. He had appeared no less than 17 times between 2010 and 2014 alone.

The car-crash interview with Die Zeit came shortly after Wikileaks had dumped material aimed at influencing voters in France to vote against Emanuel Macron and side with the far-right candidate Marine Le Pen – whose deep financial and political ties to Russia were already exposed.

Farage was openly supporting Le Pen during her campaign and was backed up by Leave.EU and Banks’ alternative media site Westmonster. Farage had also personally used his LBC radio show to broadcast a repeat Assange’s denial of Russian involvement in the hacking of the Democratic National Committee and their presidential nominee Hilary Clinton during the US election.

“In the same month as Farage’s Broadcast, senior officials in the CIA completely contradicted both of them, saying the leaked DNC material had been traced to Russian GRU officials and “handed off to Assange via a circuitous route” in an attempt to avoid detection of the original source.”

In January 2017, Farage told his listeners “[Julian Assange] is absolutely clear that all the information he has got is not from Russian sources.”

In the same month as Farage’s Broadcast, senior officials in the CIA completely contradicted both of them, saying the leaked DNC material had been traced to Russian GRU officials and “handed off to Assange via a circuitous route” in an attempt to avoid detection of the original source.

That route was a hacker known as Guccifer 2.0 who, between 2016 and January 2017, publicly stated they were not Russian but Romanian. However, despite stating they were unable to read or understand Russian, metadata of their own emails showed a Russian-language-only VPN was used. In addition, when pressed to use the Romanian language in an interview with reporters, Motherboard noted they “used such clunky grammar and terminology that experts believed he was using an online translator.”

On the DNC email hack and subsequent leaks, one long available declassified intelligence report states: “Guccifer 2.0, who claimed to be an independent Romanian hacker, made multiple contradictory statements and false claims about his likely Russian identity throughout the election. Press reporting suggests more than one person claiming to be Guccifer 2.0 interacted with journalists.”

This conclusion was, of course, logical and followed previous findings of extensive state-sponsored Russian hacking now well determined and the questions around Guccifer being a Russian asset with a fake identity. The content of the DNC leak reviewed in the report was taken from e-mail accounts targeted by the Russian GRU in March 2016 and appeared on DCLeaks.com starting in June. The intelligence agencies stated the GRU relayed material it acquired from the DNC and senior Democratic officials to WikiLeaks.

According to the analysts: “Moscow most likely chose WikiLeaks because of its self-proclaimed reputation for authenticity.” They noted that documents published WikiLeaks did not contain any evident forgeries and, in early September 2016, Putin had said publicly it was important the DNC data was exposed to WikiLeaks, calling the search for the source of the leaks a distraction and denying Russian state-level involvement.

Importantly, the report also confirmed the Kremlin’s principal international propaganda outlet, RT, had actively collaborated with WikiLeaks. According to the CIA, RT’s editor-in-chief visited WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London in August 2013, where they discussed renewing his broadcast contract with RT. This was also reported in Russian and Western media. The Russian media, however, subsequently announced RT had become “the only Russian media company” to partner with WikiLeaks and had received access to “new leaks of secret information.”

RT, the CIA said, had also routinely given Assange sympathetic coverage and provided him with a platform to denounce the United States – support mirrored by Nigel Farage, who also has those close links with RT and who had also visited Assange, as I separately established.

According to the CIA, the election-related disclosures and disinformation more broadly reflected a pattern of Russian intelligence using hacked information in tailored influence efforts against targets such as Olympic athletes and other foreign governments. Such efforts, they confirmed, have included releasing or altering personal data, defacing websites, and releasing emails.

A prominent target since the 2016 Summer Olympics was the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), with leaks assessed to have: “Originated with the GRU and that have involved data on US athletes. Crucially, however, the report accurately identified Russia collected information on some Republican-affiliated targets but did not conduct a comparable disclosure campaign. Russia’s state-run propaganda machine — which I knew was comprised of its domestic media apparatus, outlets targeting global audiences such as RT and Sputnik and a network of quasi-government trolls — contributed to the influence campaign by “serving as a platform for Kremlin messaging to Russian and international audiences,” the report stated. The same pattern was evident in both Brexit and the French election.

“If you triangulate Russia, WikiLeaks, Assange and Trump associates the person who comes up with the most hits is Nigel Farage…he’s right in the middle of these relationships. He turns up over and over again. There’s a lot of attention being paid to him.”

State-owned Russian media also made increasingly favourable comments about Trump as the 2016 US general and primary election campaigns progressed, while consistently offering negative coverage of the Clinton campaign. On the 6th of August 2016, RT published an English language video called Julian Assange Special: Do WikiLeaks Have the E-mail That’ll Put Clinton in Prison? and an exclusive interview with Assange entitled Clinton and ISIS Funded by the Same Money.

The most popular English language video about the then President-elect, called “Trump Will Not Be Permitted to Win,” featured Julian Assange and had over two million views. According to the intelligence report, Russia used trolls as well as RT as part of its influence efforts to denigrate Clinton, and this effort amplified stories on scandals about the Democratic candidate and the role of WikiLeaks in the election campaign.

The FBI also came out at the start of June 2017 and declared Nigel Farage a person of interest in their Trump-Russia probe.

One source in the Bureau told the Guardian: “If you triangulate Russia, WikiLeaks, Assange and Trump associates the person who comes up with the most hits is Nigel Farage…he’s right in the middle of these relationships. He turns up over and over again. There’s a lot of attention being paid to him.”

In a statement, Farage said: “This hysterical attempt to associate me with the Putin regime is a result of the liberal elite being unable to accept Brexit and the election of President Trump. For the record, I have never been to Russia, I’ve had no business dealings with Russia in my previous life and I have appeared approximately three times on RT in the last 18 months. I consider it extremely doubtful that I could be a person of interest to the FBI as I have no connections to Russia.”

Assange has since left little doubt he is acting for Russia, and Farage has stayed closely aligned throughout. Most recently, Assange has been supporting Russian interests in Catalonia and has also declared his support for Calexit, a movement Farage and Banks aligned themselves with, in March 2017.

The final nail in the coffin is the indictment of George Papadopoulos, a Trump Aide, whose timeline confirms Russia hacked the DNC, and that the Kremlin interacted directly with Trump’s campaign and Julian Assange.

The indictment confirmed a joint intelligence service report and the US government has recently announced a series of charges are to come for Russian officials involved in the hacking and leaking.

The links between Farage’s UKIP and the Trump-Russia inquiry are endless and even lead into the newly released Paradise Papers, but it is Assange and the Trump campaign which also brings Farage and the Leave.EU figures back to Russia in another way: Cambridge Analytica. Trump’s data firm who claimed to have approached Julian Assange for the leaked emails around the time the FBI posted a picture of Papadopoulos in London, just around the corner from the Ecuadorian Embassy.

The Leave.EU campaign and the central figures Nigel Farage, Arron Banks, and Andrew Wigmore, worked with Cambridge Analytica – who are now being examined by the Trump-Russia probe – though they have since started to deny the collaboration.

The co-operation is, in fact, subject to not one but two inquiries in the UK as well, with both the Electoral Commission and the Information Commissioner’s Office investigating.

While Cambridge Analytica itself is under the spotlight, along with its shady management (Steve Bannon and Robert Mercer), their activity beyond Trump and Brexit is no less interesting.

“This may help Russia on the European gas market. Qatar’s tanker fleet is barred from using regional ports and anchorages, posing a threat to the country’s LNG supplies.”

In the last few days events in Saudi Arabia have taken a turn which was unexpected by many, however, the writing was on the wall a long time ago when the inexplicable Qatar crisis began in the region. What we now know, however, is that Cambridge Analytica acted to support Russian interests in the region, having been engaged as a Foreign Agent to promote “Blockade Qatar.”

The crisis saw Russia taking the side of Qatar in a move designed to exert pressure on European gas supplies using its long-term allies Iran and Turkey to assist.

RT was swift to provide context at the time, writing: “This may help Russia on the European gas market. Qatar’s tanker fleet is barred from using regional ports and anchorages, posing a threat to the country’s LNG supplies. Traders are worried Saudi Arabia and allies would refuse to accept LNG shipments from Qatar, and that Egypt might even bar tankers carrying Qatari cargo from using the Suez Canal, despite Cairo’s obligation under an international agreement to allow the use of the waterway. If LNG supplies are disrupted, Europe will have to buy more gas from Russia.”

Qatar had not long completed a purchase of significant shares in Rosneft, Russia’s state-owned fossil fuel company. Rosneft is a client of Trump cyber-security lead Rudy Giuliani’s law and consulting firm, Giuliani Partners, which is also tied to close Putin allies at Alfa Bank. Investigative journalist Grant Stern has written about the Rosneft deal, saying: “Circumstantial evidence strongly indicates that President Donald J. Trump and his campaign associates brokered a massive oil privatization deal, where his organisation facilitated a global financial transaction to sell Russian Oil stock to its Syrian War adversary, the Emirate of Qatar.” The Emirate of Qatar was another Giuliani client.

Trump hosted a Qatari state-run business owned by the QIA, the buyer of Rosneft shares in the deal, in the Manhattan Trump Tower for many years. Carter Page, who acted as a gopher in the transaction, was working directly for Trump at the time. Having flatly denied meeting any Russian officials in 2016, Page later contradicted himself as it emerged he met Sergey Kislyak, the Russian Ambassador, during the Republican National Convention. Kislyak is both a spy and recruiter for Russian intelligence, according to intelligence officials.

According to Andrey Illarionov, Russian economist and former economic policy advisor to the Russian President, Putin has been aiming to target Qatar and brand them as terrorists since 2015. The Kremlin wished to target “military, infrastructure and energy sites in Saudi Arabia and Qatar.” At the time, the FSB announced it was offering a 50 million US dollar reward to anyone who could provide evidence about links to terrorism in the country, in order to justify an intervention.

Illarionov specifically highlighted the pressure such a move would place on NATO allies by increasing oil prices.

Once upon a time, one piece of a story like this would have been dismissable, standing alone. It isn’t standing alone though. Neither in the past nor in the present. A denied link to Russian interests is not where the story of Britain’s useful idiots ends.

Only on the 25th of September 2017, Andy Wigmore had taken to Twitter and, by what he said, you may have assumed all investigations were finished and a clean bill of health had been granted to Leave.EU, kicking every conclusion to the contrary into the long grass.

Wigmore wrote: “That’s not illegal – paid them no money so broke no rules as the @ElectoralCommUK will happily confirm.”

On calling the Electoral Commission to have this confirmed, the response wasn’t quite the one Wigmore indicated would be received.

“In Wigmore’s words they are: “Part of Goddard Gunster – splitting California for starters and a dozen referendums.””

A spokesperson for the Electoral Commission, having consulted senior colleagues, confirmed: “The investigation into Leave.EU is still ongoing and due to this we cannot comment on specifics. But Leave.EU remain under investigation.”

Just to be sure, the ICO was also contacted, who provided the following update on their inquiry: “Our investigation into the use of data analytics for political purposes, announced by the Information Commissioner on 17 May, remains ongoing. We intend to publicise our findings later this year.”

So, there was no clean bill of health, but Wigmore carried on talking to others on Twitter, including Observer journalist Carole Cadwalladr, where yet more spilled out when she put questions to him. It appears Leave.EU is actively diversifying worldwide.

In Wigmore’s words they are: “Part of Goddard Gunster – splitting California for starters and a dozen referendums.”

This was intriguing news, and though Wigmore was asked directly if they were involved in Catalonia, the Kurdish independence referendum, or others, he has not yet replied.

Catalonia, we now know, was a target of Russian interference. First came the deployment of Russian asset Julian Assange, acting as a disruptive force true to the distinct pattern in all previous Russian activity. And, latterly, more direct engagement has become clear, as publicised by the EU STRATCOM team – who are part of Europe’s defences against Russian disinformation war. Kurdish independence was also on the radar, in particular due to Russia’s installed leader Edrogan already threatening military intervention. Of course, Farage himself had also become involved as a supporter in the AfD’s shocking and chaotic rise to the Bundestag – another operation of Russia which we knew about in advance.

All of this happened on the same day Farage spoke at an Alabama rally, endorsing a controversial candidate alongside former Trump strategist Steve Bannon – head of Breitbart and once a board member of Cambridge Analytica.

Since then, Cambridge Analytica has been eyeing up China – with Bannon in tow – and, most curiously after months of denials have decided using psychographics or psychometrics in elections is okay after all. So they are back to talking about it and admitting they do it.

“Enabling somebody and encouraging somebody to go out to vote on a wet Wednesday morning is no different in my mind to persuading and encouraging somebody to move from one toothpaste brand to another,” said commercial VP Richard Robinson, at an advertising in September.

I contacted Goddard Gunster, asking whether or not Wigmore’s claim was true, what they are doing, what the company is called, where it is based, and where it is operating. As yet, the PR firm, who specialise in elections, has not yet replied.

But we do know that Farage, Banks, and Wigmore signalled their involvement in Calexit in March 2017, which leads them back to Russia directly once again.

“UKIP has long been a nexus for Russian intelligence activity – and a clear target – since the very early days. And the ties when set together allow only one conclusion to be drawn: Farage’s party, and all of its Useful Idiots, have been acting in Russian interests for years and continue to do so.”

Farage, Banks, and Wigmore were hired by Gerry Gunster and Republican Scott Baugh in early 2017. At the time, Banks said of the plan: “It would be portrayed as the Hollywood elites versus the people, breaking up the bad government,” a now very familiar narrative.

“We were saying that people said the same about Brexit — and we just went and did it,” he added.

The trio attended several events in Orange County two weeks ago where they helped raise £800,000 in donations for the campaign.

Wigmore claimed in press interviews that wealthy technology and agriculture capitalists in the liberal state felt “left out” since Reagan had left the White House in the 1980s. He said: “This has been done before with West Virginia and Virginia and North and South Dakota, so it can work.”

It was obvious Russian trolls were deployed on the social media support of Calexit – something re-affirmed in a recent BBC broadcast now the world is catching up. The same trolls supported both Trump and Brexit, working in tandem.

And, due to the Senate hearings taking place in the US, we now know not only the level of Russian deployment on Social Media, but the cash values attributed to psychometric adverts and messaging. There is also extensive evidence suggesting the Trump Campaign was sharing it’s targeting data with the Russian state.

What’s clear, taking into account all of the evidence is that UKIP has long been a nexus for Russian intelligence activity – and a clear target – since the very early days. And the ties when set together allow only one conclusion to be drawn: Farage’s party, and all of its Useful Idiots, have been acting in Russian interests for years and continue to do so.

The State Actor:

One key area which needs to be understood, to show the true nature of the problem and highlight the grave implications, comes from RT, the Russian state broadcaster with whom Farage and company have become closely associated.

Annex A of a declassified CIA report, which draws the conclusion Vladimir Putin himself ordered interference in the 2016 US election, is specifically dedicated to RT.

“a Kremlin-directed campaign to undermine faith in the US Government and fuel political protest. The Kremlin has committed significant resources to expanding the channel’s reach, particularly its social media footprint.”

The CIA report introduces RT with the following description: “RT America TV, a Kremlin-financed channel operated from within the United States, has substantially expanded its repertoire of programming that highlights criticism of alleged US shortcomings in democracy and civil liberties. The rapid expansion of RT’s operations and budget and recent candid statements by RT’s leadership point to the channel’s importance to the Kremlin as a messaging tool and indicate a Kremlin-directed campaign to undermine faith in the US Government and fuel political protest. The Kremlin has committed significant resources to expanding the channel’s reach, particularly its social media footprint.”

The network also runs a successful operation in Britain, on which Farage, Batten, and others have appeared. The CIA state that “a reliable UK report states that RT recently was the most-watched foreign news channel in the UK” and highlights that the US incarnation “positioned itself as a domestic US channel and has deliberately sought to obscure any legal ties to the Russian Government.”

“We actually want to take back control of our country, our democracy and our lives.’ That’s what happened.”

The CIA assesses that in the run-up to the 2012 US presidential election, RT intensified its critical coverage of the United States. “The channel portrayed the US electoral process as undemocratic and featured calls by US protesters for the public to rise up and “take this government back.”

“In an effort to highlight the alleged “lack of democracy” in the United States,” the CIA report states, “RT broadcast, hosted, and advertised third-party candidate debates and ran reporting supportive of the political agenda of these candidates. The RT hosts asserted that the US two-party system does not represent the views of at least one-third of the population and is a “sham”.”

Much of this content is also recognisable in respect of RTs coverage of UKIP and Farage himself.

On the 28th June 2016, for example, Farage appeared on the channel just after the Brexit referendum saying, “Oh, gosh! Who would’ve believed it? Who would’ve believed that despite all the threats and bullying from the international community, President Obama, the OECD, [British Chancellor of the Exchequer] George Osborne, the Bank of England… who would’ve believed the British people would have the courage to say: ‘No, no, no, no. We’re not listening. We actually want to take back control of our country, our democracy and our lives.’ That’s what happened.”

The narrative is almost an exact resit of US content aired by RT over a number of years – featured in the CIA report – including a documentary about the Occupy Wall Street movement where the network framed a fight against “the ruling class” and described the current US political system as corrupt and dominated by corporations. RT advertising for the documentary featured calls to “take back” the government.

Speaking to a source from with the Occupy movement, they raised specific concerns dating back years as regards Julian Assange and his associates making payments within the movement for information, culminating in visits from the CIA who had concerns over Russian targeting of activists.

The core message connections in Farage’s narrative and the RT generic push are extensive, with the US personified as an undemocratic union of self-interest. Farage has appeared on RT peddling much the same message about the EU with clips dating back to 2011.

“RT is a leading media voice opposing Western intervention in the Syrian conflict and blaming the West for waging “information wars” against the Syrian Government.” Farage has also mirrored this position for some time.”

Interestingly, the report notes that “RT runs anti-fracking programming, highlighting environmental issues and the impacts on public health,” stating “this is likely reflective of the Russian Government’s concern about the impact of fracking and US natural gas production on the global energy market and the potential challenges to Gazprom’s profitability.”

Farage has consistently been for fracking, reaffirmed in this 2016 clip from the BBC, though he and the party have been broadly dismissive of other renewable energy projects which would reduce the UK’s reliance on imported fuels.

Campaigning in Grimsby in 2015, he claimed that by 2020 people would be paying a “20% surcharge on their electricity bill just to subsidise the renewable industry.” He added: “So I have to say, I think in 10 years’ time there won’t be a renewable industry, we will have rethought the whole thing,” speaking to BBC Humberside.

By early 2017, the Russian position was seeing heavy lobbying efforts to reduce the reduction of subsidies for renewable energy production. The Russian government has lowered its target for wind generation between 2021 to 2025 by 250 MW to 3.351 GW and has halved its goal for small hydropower plants.

The CIA report also states “RT is a leading media voice opposing Western intervention in the Syrian conflict and blaming the West for waging “information wars” against the Syrian Government.” Farage has also mirrored this position for some time.

The CIA report also refers to the years before 2011, saying “in an earlier example of RT’s messaging in support of the Russian Government, during the Georgia-Russia military conflict the channel accused Georgians of killing civilians and organizing a genocide of the Ossetian people. According to Simonyan, when “the Ministry of Defense was at war with Georgia,” RT was “waging an information war against the entire Western world”.

In 2008, Farage was supporting the Russian position in a BBC interview.

Even in 2012, the CIA captured the truth of RT’s position. “In recent interviews, RT’s leadership has candidly acknowledged its mission to expand its US audience and to expose it to Kremlin messaging,” the report states. However, it notes the RT leadership “rejected claims that RT interferes in US domestic affairs.”

The CIA meticulously document comments by RT Editor in Chief Margarita Simonyan, who claimed in popular arts magazine Afisha “It is important to have a channel that people get used to, and then, when needed, you show them what you need to show. In some sense, not having our own foreign broadcasting is the same as not having a ministry of defense. When there is no war, it looks like we don’t need it. However, when there is a war, it is critical.”

The report states, “according to Simonyan, “the word ‘propaganda’ has a very negative connotation, but indeed, there is not a single international foreign TV channel that is doing something other than promotion of the values of the country that it is broadcasting from.” She added that “when Russia is at war, we are, of course, on Russia’s side,” adding that “RT’s goal is “to make an alternative channel that shares information unavailable elsewhere in order to “conquer the audience” and expose it to Russian state messaging.”

Simonyan, the CIA outline, has close ties to top Russian Government officials, especially Presidential Administration Deputy Chief of Staff Aleksey Gromov, who reportedly manages political TV coverage in Russia and is one of the founders of RT.

“Simonyan has claimed that Gromov shielded her from other officials and their requests to air certain reports. Russian media consider Simonyan to be Gromov’s protege and Simonyan replaced Gromov on state-owned Channel One’s Board of Directors. Government officials, including Gromov and Putin’s Press Secretary Peskov, were involved in creating RT and appointing Simonyan. According to Simonyan, Gromov oversees political coverage on TV, and he has periodic meetings with media managers where he shares classified information and discusses their coverage plans. Some opposition journalists, including Andrey Loshak, claim that he also ordered media attacks on opposition figures,” the report states.

“According to Simonyan, the Russian Government sets rating and viewership requirements for RT and, since RT receives budget from the state, it must complete tasks given by the state,”

According to the CIA, the Kremlin staffs RT and closely supervises RT’s coverage, recruiting people who can convey Russian strategic messaging because of their ideological beliefs.

“The head of RT’s Arabic-language service, Aydar Aganin, was rotated from the diplomatic service to manage RT’s Arabic-language expansion, suggesting a close relationship between RT and Russia’s foreign policy apparatus,” the report states.

“RT’s London Bureau is managed by Darya Pushkova, the daughter of Aleksey Pushkov, the current chair of the Duma Russian Foreign Affairs Committee and a former Gorbachev speechwriter,” the report also states.

“According to Simonyan, the Russian Government sets rating and viewership requirements for RT and, since RT receives budget from the state, it must complete tasks given by the state,” the report adds.

“According to Nikolov, RT news stories are written and edited “to become news” exclusively in RT’s Moscow office,” the CIA also state.

The Annex concludes that “RT hires or makes contractual agreements with Westerners with views that fit its agenda and airs them on RT.”

According to the CIA, “Simonyan said on the pro-Kremlin show “Minaev Live” that RT has enough audience and money to be able to choose its hosts, and it chooses the hosts that “think like us,” “are interested in working in the anti-mainstream,” and defend RT’s beliefs on social media.”

Interestingly, the report adds that “some hosts and journalists do not present themselves as associated with RT when interviewing people, and many of them have affiliations to other media and activist organizations.”

As the US Senate inquiry has continued, RT has been declared a state actor and even Twitter has off-boarded their advertising. The US Department of Justice also requested that RT register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

The prolonged, deep Russia ties, and the in party expertise provided by Batten, leaves little doubt that UKIP was fully aware of who and what they were dealing with. Yet they chose to maintain and even enhance their relationship with the Russian state. This appears to be choice, not an accident.

The Bland Truth:

The warning signs have been there, in public, for a very long time.

Even in 2015, UKIP was the head-line act voting against a motion for ‘Foreign’ funding of European political parties.

Gabrielius Landsbergis, a Lithuanian Conservative, called for an end to “business as usual” with Russia, seeking an end to “Russia´s support for and financing of radical and extremist parties in the EU” following a meeting of neo-Nazis in St Petersburg earlier that year. The Front National, lead by Farage’s friend Le Pen, had received millions in loans from Russia at the time.

Ukip MEPs including Farage, Patrick O’Flynn, and Tim Aker voted against the measures, as did Marine Le Pen and members of Hungary’s Jobbik.

One Ukip spokesperson defended the stance, saying: “UKIP does not support interference by the European Commission in any aspect of funding for British political parties. UKIP supports the laws which are already in place in the UK which prohibit foreign funding of political parties.”

UKIP is not, however, to be taken at this word.

The Alliance for Direct Democracy in Europe, a UKIP-controlled EU Parliamentary group, was asked to return over one-hundred-and-seventy thousand Euro after officials uncovered a breach of the rules arising from the alliance pouring money into the United Kingdom’s 2015 general election and the Brexit referendum. UKIP spent the EU funds on polling and analysis in constituencies where they hoped to win a seat in the 2015 general election, including in South Thanet – a seat contested by Farage.

The party also funded polls to gauge the public mood on Brexit, months before official campaigning began.

The EU report on the misspending concluded that “these services were not in the interest of the European party, which could neither be involved in the national elections nor in the referendum on a national level. The constituencies selected for many of the polls underline that the polling was conducted in the interest of UKIP. Most of the constituencies can be identified as being essential for reaching a significant representation in the House of Commons from the 2015 general election or for a positive result for the leave campaign.”

It is known that Russia had interfered in the 2015 general election and foreign powers were involved in cyber attacks during Brexit.

The EU report also concluded there were “a substantial number of activities for which financing ought to be considered as non-eligible expenditure,” in respect of spending on polls around the Scottish and Welsh elections in 2016.

Having already uncovered quite a substantial labyrinth of companies which utilise surveys and polling to harvest and trade in data, some of which were directly linked to UKIP, Donald Trump, and Arron Banks, the conclusions reached by the EU were set in a much clearer context.

Farage responded to the EU report, then as interim leader of UKIP, saying: “We are in an environment where rules are wilfully interpreted as suits. I’ve understood absolutely the rules. This is pure victimisation.”

“It may well transpire that Banks’ mystery millions came from loans from Mellon, personally estimated to be worth £850 million who made “spectacular amounts” of money in Russia during the 1990s”

Speaking to the Guardian after Brexit, Banks repeated much the same line, saying: “We were just cleverer than the regulators and the politicians. Of course we were,” adding they “pushed the boundary of everything, right to the edge. It was war.”

The ADDE as a whole went on to be denied two-hundred-and-fifty thousand Euro in grants for failing to follow the rules and, as a result of the EU inquiry, the parliament told me the group declared itself bankrupt in the wake of it.

Arron Banks, UKIP’s primary donor and backer of Russian mess Leave.EU, is now facing a further inquiry by the Electoral Commission into whether he received foreign funds during Brexit and used them to illegally finance Brexit campaigning.

UKIP are also under further fire as whistleblowers have raised concerns they were being paid directly by Bannon’s Breitbart during the Brexit campaign.

Farage and Banks continue to deny any financial wrongdoing or financial links to Russia, but this isn’t really relevant. However, it is worth noting that – because of Wigmore’s own Instagram posts – both he and banks can be linked to Conister Bank in the Isle of Man and Jim Mellon.

It may well transpire that Banks’ mystery millions came from loans from Mellon, personally estimated to be worth £850 million who made “spectacular amounts” of money in Russia during the 1990s, against a backdrop of significant violence providing a harsh environment for anyone to create wealth.

In the 90s, Boris Yeltsin expressed his concern that Russia was becoming a “superpower of crime” and, after the fall of the Soviet Union, the old-school tattooed mobsters of the so-called vorovskoi mir and their vor v zakone leaders were succeeded by a new generation of avtoritety (“authorities”).

These are hybrids: gangster-businessmen who were able to enthusiastically take advantage of crash privatisation, legal anomalies, and state incapacity which characterised Yeltsin’s era.

One former, senior commander of the police in Moscow said at the time: “These were days when we knew the bandits had not just money and firepower on their side, but they had a better krysha [meaning “roof” and referring to political protection in Russian slang] and we just had to accept that.”

There was, according to academic studies, a very real fear the country could become, on the one hand, a failed state, and on the other, a very successful criminal enterprise. It became the latter. The 1990s saw organised crime spread like cancer, evolving until, by the end of the decade, a series of violent local, regional, and even national turf wars to establish territorial boundaries and hierarchies were coming to an end.

The wealthiest avtoritety partnered with the vast resources of their oligarch counterparts, who had used the collapse of the old state to seize control of markets and assets. They were also joined by some small groups within the military and security structures, motivated by both perverse nationalism and their own personal interests, who acted as provocateurs aiming for a renewal of Russian state power. This is how they all came together, in the end, to put a stop to constant disorder and build something new from the ashes.

“criminal gangs were used to ensure a Putin vote while disrupting opposition campaigns. The genesis of managed democracy.”

Even before Vladimir Putin was elevated to acting president in 1999, then confirmed as Yeltsin’s successor in 2000, the battles were ending and, while criminals at first feared Putin was serious about his tough law-and-order rhetoric, it was soon understood his offer was a new contract with the underworld.

Gangsters could go about their business without a systematic crackdown, on the condition it was accepted the state was the “biggest gang in town and they did nothing to directly challenge it.” The underworld complied and, so the story goes, “indiscriminate street violence was replaced by targeted assassinations; tattoos were out, and Italian suits were in; the new generation gangster-businessmen had successfully domesticated the old-school criminals.”

“This was not just a process of setting new boundaries for the criminals; it also led to a restructuring of connections between the underworld and the ‘upperworld’, to the benefit of the latter,” wrote one academic, adding: “Connections between these groups and the state security apparatus grew, and the two became closer to each other. The result was not simply institutionalisation of corruption and further blurring of the boundaries between licit and illicit; but the emergence of a conditional understanding that Russia now had a nationalised underworld.”

In short, the gangsters were expected to comply with the requests of the state and, during the Second Chechen War, for example, Moscow was able to persuade Chechen gangsters not to support their rebel compatriots.

The same thing, it is alleged, recurred during the 2011 State Duma elections – where criminal gangs were used to ensure a Putin vote while disrupting opposition campaigns. The genesis of managed democracy.

The Public Interest:

The body of evidence is clear and we don’t need a smoking gun because we have the bullet fragments, the gunshot wounds, and the shell casings. This is how you solve crime in the real world: by assembling the evidence and putting a case before the appropriate authorities. In this case the public.

Nigel Farage and Gerard Batten have worked openly for years with a state actor, RT – a direct arm of Putin’s Kremlin and have actively pursued policy positions which are in the Kremlin’s interest.

“Sources within the intelligence community with direct knowledge of Banks and Farage have indicated they travelled to Russia at the behest of the Kremlin and Kompromat material may exist as a result of the trip.”

They, Leave.EU, and UKIP, along with the additional key figures Andrew Wigmore and Arron Banks, find themselves embedded in a network of Russia state assets, working toward similar goals having apparently presented themselves as easy pickings and Useful Idiots.

Sources within UKIP have long claimed Batten and Farage were regularly in the company of Oleg Shor, a Russian embassy attaché believed to work for the FSB, and that RT staff, including Laura Smith, were regular visitors.

In his own account of the Brexit campaign, Banks describes meeting “a shady character called Oleg” while at UKIP’s annual conference in September 2015. “He was introduced to us as the First Secretary of the embassy – in other words, the KGB’s man in London,” wrote the UKIP donor, who went on to say he was invited to a private meeting with the Russian ambassador Alexander Yakovenko. “Our host wanted the inside track on the Brexit campaign and grilled us on the potential implications,” Banks recorded in his memoir.

Sources within the intelligence community with direct knowledge of Banks and Farage have indicated they travelled to Russia at the behest of the Kremlin and Kompromat material may exist as a result of the trip. The FCO has not replied to requests for further information and it is their policy not to communicate on matters of intelligence operations.

After recent calls for a UK Russia inquiry, Banks released a statement in which he added: “My sole involvement with the ‘Russians’ was a boozy six-hour lunch with the ambassador where we drank the place dry (they have some cracking vodka and brandy).”

Though they have been savvy and Trump was seen as a blessing, the Trump-Russia inquiry has confirmed RT as a Kremlin operation, and this leaves them undone. No plausible deniability remains. It doesn’t matter how they were paid or even if they were because the evidence and the benefits in kind tell the full story which has been staring us in the face for years.

“Farage has not responded to any of these questions and neither of them has replied to questions asking if Farage had ever been to Russia, who he met, who he was with, and what he did there.”

Batten was asked how many times he had appeared on RT between 2010 and the present, if he was paid, and if the fee was £2,000. He was also asked how many times RT staff had visited his offices, what he could explain about Stroilov and who was Oleg.

He responded via a spokesperson, who said only: “He has been on RT number of times over the last 10 years or more and has never asked or received any money whatsoever.”

Farage has not responded to any of these questions and neither of them has replied to questions asking if Farage had ever been to Russia, who he met, who he was with, and what he did there.

RT responded to questions via a spokesperson, saying: “RT never paid either of them for their appearances. We cannot comment on whether any compensation was provided by independent production companies.”

Leave.EU and the Russian Embassy have made their joint response clear.

Without even referring to The Moscow Rules directly, the appropriate way to conclude here is to paraphrase Fleming’s Goldfinger which nods to them: “Once is an accident. Twice is a coincidence. Three times is an enemy action.”

We’ve needed to talk about Nigel for a very long time, and now we can reasonably conclude that Farage and those around him are assets of the Kremlin.

With that overdue conversation put to bed, perhaps it is time we had the grown-up discussion about Russia which should have started in 2016 when we still had a complete crime scene.

And if the skeletons need to dance in Westminster, the time has come to let them Barynya.

“We’ve needed to talk about Nigel for a very long time, and now we can reasonably conclude that Farage and those around him are assets of the Kremlin.”

#Farage, #Batten, #Banks, #Wigmore, #UKIP, #Leave.EU, #Putin, #Russia, #Trump, #RT, #Oleg Shor, #FSB, #Assange, #Kremlin, #Cambridge Analytica, #George Papadopoulos, #Mueller, #Facebook, #Twitter, #Trolls, #Brexit, #Calexit, #Yakovenko
To view the original article CLICK HERE

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Greg_L-W.

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Exposing The Unholy Alliance … #Trump, #Assange, #Bannon, #Farage …

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Hi,

‘IF it looks like a duck & it walks like a duck and it sounds like a duck, it most probably is a duck …’

Corruption is remarcably hard to prove as the corrupt are the most effective witnesses – often the only witnesses – one is well advised to consider the context, study the motivation and follow the money … Then and only then ‘IF it looks like corruption etc. …’

Julian Assange was asked by Cambridge Analytica if he wanted ‘help’ with Hillary Clinton’s stolen emails.
Julian Assange was asked by Cambridge Analytica if he wanted ‘help’ with Hillary Clinton’s stolen emails. Photograph: Dominic Lipinski/PA

Last Wednesday, 11 months into Donald Trump’s new world order, in the first year of normalisation, a sudden unblurring of lines took place. A shift. A door of perception swung open.

Because that was the day that the dramatis personae of two separate Trump-Russia scandals smashed headlong into one another. A high-speed news car crash between Cambridge Analytica and Wikileaks, the two organisations that arguably had the most impact on 2016, coming together last week in one head-spinning scoop.

That day, we learned that Alexander Nix, the CEO of Cambridge Analytica, the controversial data firm that helped Trump to power, had contacted Julian Assange to ask him if he wanted “help” with Wikileaks’s stash of stolen emails.

That’s the stash of stolen emails that had such a devastating impact on Hillary Clinton in the last months of the campaign. And this story brought Wikileaks, which the head of the CIA describes as a “hostile intelligence service”, directly together with the Trump campaign for which Cambridge Analytica worked. This is an amazing plot twist for the company, owned by US billionaire Robert Mercer, which is already the subject of investigations by the House intelligence committee, the Senate intelligence committee, the FBI and, it was announced late on Friday night, the Senate judiciary committee.

So far, so American. These are US scandals involving US politics and the news made the headlines in US bulletins across US networks.

But it’s also Cambridge Analytica, the data analytics company, which has its headquarters in central London and that, following a series of articles about its role in Brexit in the Guardian and the Observer, is also being investigated, by the Electoral Commission and the Information Commissioner’s Office. The company that was spun out of a British military contractor, is headed by an old Etonian and that responded to our stories earlier this year by threatening to sue us. It’s our Cambridge it’s named after, not the American one, and it was here that it processed the voter files of 240 million US citizens.

It’s also here that this “hostile intelligence service” – Wikileaks – is based. The Ecuadorian embassy is just a few miles, as the crow flies, from Cambridge Analytica’s head office. Because this is not just about America. It’s about Britain, too. This is transatlantic. It’s not possible to separate Britain and the US in this whole sorry mess – and I say this as someone who has spent months trying. Where we see this most clearly is in that other weird Wikileaks connection: Nigel Farage. Because that moment in March when Farage was caught tripping down the steps of the Ecuadorian embassy was the last moment the lines suddenly became visible. That the ideological overlaps between Wikileaks and Trump and Brexit were revealed to be not just lines, but a channel of communication.

‘Nigel Farage, who visited Donald Trump and then Julian Assange.’
Pinterest
‘Nigel Farage, who visited Donald Trump and then Julian Assange.’ Photograph: Ken McKay/ITV/REX/Shutterstock

Because if there’s one person who’s in the middle of all of this, but who has escaped any proper scrutiny, it’s Nigel Farage. That’s Nigel Farage, who led the Leave.EU campaign, which is being investigated by the Electoral Commission alongside Cambridge Analytica, about whether the latter made an “impermissible donation” of services to the Leave campaign. Nigel Farage who visited Donald Trump and then Julian Assange. Who is friends with Steve Bannon and Robert Mercer. Who headed an organisation – Ukip – which has multiple, public, visible but almost entirely unreported Russian connections. Who is paid by the Russian state via the broadcaster RT, which was banned last week from Twitter. And who appears like clockwork on British television without any word of this.

This is a power network that involves Wikileaks and Farage, and Cambridge Analytica and Farage, and Robert Mercer and Farage. Steve Bannon, former vice president of Cambridge Analytica, and Farage. It’s Nigel Farage and Brexit and Trump and Cambridge Analytica and Wikileaks… and, if the Senate intelligence committee and the House intelligence committee and the FBI are on to anything at all, somewhere in the middle of all that, Russia.

Try to follow this on a daily basis and it’s one long headspin: a spider’s web of relationships and networks of power and patronage and alliances that spans the Atlantic and embraces data firms, thinktanks and media outlets. It is about complicated corporate structures in obscure jurisdictions, involving offshore funds funnelled through the black-box algorithms of the platform tech monopolists. That it’s eye-wateringly complicated and geographically diffuse is not a coincidence. Confusion is the charlatan’s friend, noise its accessory. The babble on Twitter is a convenient cloak of darkness.

Yet it’s also quite simple. In a well-functioning democracy, a well-functioning press and a well-functioning parliament would help a well-functioning judiciary do its job. Britain is not that country. There is a vacuum where questions should be, the committees, the inquiries, the headlines on the TV bulletins. What was Nigel Farage doing in the Ecuadorian embassy? More to the point: why has no public official asked him? Why is he giving speeches – for money – in the US? Who’s paying him? I know this because my weirdest new hobby of 2017 is to harry Arron Banks, the Bristol businessman who was Ukip and Leave.EU’s main funder, and Andy Wigmore, Leave.EU’s comms man and Belize’s trade attache to the US, across the internet late at night. Wigmore told me about this new US venture – an offshore-based political consultancy working on Steve Bannon-related projects – in a series of tweets. Is it true? Who knows? Leave.EU has learned from its Trumpian friends that black is white and white is black and these half-facts are a convenient way of diffusing scandal and obscuring truth.

What on earth was Farage doing advancing Calexit – Californian Brexit? And why did I find a photo of him hanging out with Dana Rohrabacher, the Californian known in the US press as “Putin’s favourite congressman”? The same Dana Rohrabacher who’s met with Don Trump Jr’s Russian lawyer and – wait for it – also visited Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy. And who is now interceding on his behalf to obtain a pardon from Don Trump Junior’s dad.

(You got this? Farage visited Trump, then Assange, then Rohrabacher. Rohrabacher met Don Trump’s Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya. Then Assange. And is now trying to close the circle with Trump.)

In these post-truth times, journalists are fighting the equivalent of a firestorm with a bottle of water and a wet hankie. We desperately need help. We need public pressure. We need parliament to step up and start asking proper questions. There may be innocent answers to all these questions. Let’s please just ask them.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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Well Will #Mueller’s Investigation Lead To The Arrest Of #Farage For Corruption Or Money-Laundering? …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 28/10/2017

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Hi,

one wonders if the source of the article below, florid as its language might be, is right this time it has proved accurate in the past. Other sources have already shown the veracity of my articles regarding Arron Banks and the coverage of George Cantrell were correct and there are sound grounds for believing Farage is in danger of arrest by American authorities – those who follow the facts will have noted he has been dropped by Trump since he was elected, even to the extent of withdrawing his invitation to the Inauguration at a time when Trump’s version of ‘Comical Ali’ was desperate to increase numbers to make his lies in the Press Office seem plausible, which they were not!

Trump And Farage – Shit Hits Fan

Last week, I noted that Combover Crybaby Donald Trump, the embattled yet still nominally sitting President of the USA, had effectively thrown former UKIP Oberscheissenführer Nigel “Thirsty” Farage under the bus. Any unwanted fallout from Mr Thirsty’s visit to the Ecuadorian embassy would have to be carried by the man Wot Did It. Now, although Farage has not yet acknowledged the fact, matter have got rather more serious.
 
Next one with bars, eh?


It was The Donald’s least favoured network CNN that told the world how serious. “A federal grand jury in Washington on Friday approved the first charges in the investigation led by special counsel Robert Mueller, according to sources briefed on the matter … The charges are still sealed under orders from a federal judge. Plans were prepared Friday for anyone charged to be taken into custody as soon as Monday, the sources said. It is unclear what the charges are”. The investigation concerns Trump, his gang, and Russia.

There was more. “Mueller’s team has also examined foreign lobbying conducted by former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and others. His team has issued subpoenas for documents and testimony to a handful of figures, including some people close to Manafort, and others involved in the Trump Tower meeting between Russians and campaign officials”. Manafort is close to Farage.
 
Moreover, Manafort had his home raided by the FBI in August, under what is known as a “no knock” warrant – the Feds just marched in and seized what they wanted. Manafort was given no notice because of a perceived fear that he would destroy evidence.
So what does this mean for all those from the UK who courted Trump so assiduously? Well, that very much depends on what form the courting took. Anything looking like collusion, conspiracy, dabbling in dodgy material, and certainly anything to do with the influencing of the democratic process would put any or all of those people well beyond the mouth of Shit Creek without recourse to any hand-held marine propulsion device.
 
After CNN’s Shimon Prokupecz broke the news, those consequences were explained by Renato Mariotti, who is not merely some amateur Twitter pundit, but a former Federal prosecutor. Readers are advised to pay good heed to his words here.
To approve an indictment, grand jurors must find there is enough evidence to show there’s good reason to believe the crime was committed … But federal prosecutors don’t present indictments unless they believe they can prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt at trial … Generally prosecutors wait until the end of the investigation to present indictments, so they have all of the evidence beforehand … Sometimes prosecutors will indict someone earlier if they hit a ‘wall’ and want to get someone to flip”.
 
Who might they have in mind? “Given Mueller’s ongoing interviews of White House staff, it doesn’t appear that his investigation is wrapping up soon … So this suggests to me that he most likely is indicting someone early to get him/her to flip. The obvious candidate is Paul Manafort”. There is also the consideration that Mueller may want to get his foot in the door before Trump tries to fire him. We’ll get on to that part later.
Behold a headless chicken


All of that is bad, but for Farage, there is worse. Information arrived on Zelo Street last week concerning someone whom the investigators may want to flip. The name in the frame was not Paul Manafort. It was someone even closer to Nigel Farage. That ties up with Mariotti’s analysis (for reasons of not wanting to frighten the horses, the name will not be pitched here – yet).

 
And for anyone still not convinced that this is serious for all within the Trump orbit, all you need is to look at the headless chicken display coming out of Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) right now. All semblance of news presentation and grounding the narrative in reality has been abandoned in favour of turning the network into Trump TV.
Don’t panic, Mr Murdoch!


So FNC is running knocking copy on Mueller, signalling panic – and opening the door to nudging a highly susceptible President into sacking the Special Prosecutor. Viewers were urged to look anywhere else but at the prospect of their hero going the same way as Richard Milhous Nixon – except in rather less time.

 
Professional loudmouth Sean Hannity was on the case as soon as CNN broke the Mueller story. “When will @HillaryClinton be indicted?” Panic indeed. And there was more. “This has been a HORRIBLE week for Mueller, Special Counsel’s office. THIS IS ALL A DISTRACTION. Monday I’ll have the details. TICK TOCK….!”. Drink that Kool-Aid!
 
It won’t work. And in bad news for the Murdoch mafiosi – remember, Rupert Murdoch is now in personal change of FNC – Media Matters for America is on the case. The attempts by FNC to talk up a “Hillary Clinton uranium story” – one with the paw prints of FNC host Hannity and his Breitbart counterpart Steve Bannon all over it – are not credible. It’s panic propagandising. The shit has well and truly hit the fan.
So should Farage and his pals steer clear of their trips to the USA? But you know the answer to that: Mr Thirsty and his closest comrades believe they’re untouchable. So sit back, get the popcorn in – and wait to see who gets flipped first.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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#Nigel_Farage Paid £1/4M into ‘Farage Educational Trust’ Off Shore In IoM To Avoid Tax …

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Hi,

this is hardly news as we published it on this web site literally years ago – long before the media saw fit to republish the facts we had provided. I note that the media have decided to regurgitate the story but with few of the facts we originally provided!

Nigel Farage admits trying to avoid tax with offshore fund

Nigel Farage admits trying to avoid tax with offshore fund
Farage confessed to the fund (Picture: EPA/Patrick Seeger)

Nigel Farage tried to avoid tax by setting up an offshore trust fund, an investigation has revealed.

The former Ukip leader admitted to the fund after an investigation by the Mirror discovered the scheme on the Isle of Man.

Farage, 49, told the Mirror his ‘financial advisers recommended I did it’.

He added: ‘It was a mistake. I was a completely unsuitable person for it. I am not blaming them it was my fault.

‘It’s a vehicle that you chuck things in through your life that you don’t need and you build up a trust fund for your children or grandchildren.

Nigel Farage admits trying to avoid tax with offshore fund
Farage had spoken out before against offshore funds (Picture: Justin Tallis/AFP/Getty Images)

‘It was called an ­educational trust and could have been used for grandchildren’s schools fees, things like that.

‘It was a mistake for three reasons. Firstly, I’m not rich enough to need one and I am never going to be.

‘Secondly, frankly, the world has changed. Things that we thought were absolutely fair practice 10 years, 20 years ago, 30 years ago aren’t any more.

‘Thirdly, it was a mistake because it cost me money. I sent a cheque off to set it up.’

He maintained that he never actually saw any financial benefit from the fund.

In a speech to the European Parliament Farage once actually criticised offshore tax funds, even naming the Isle of Man as a location where many are based.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

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reg_L-W.

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#Dark_Money Funding of #BreXit & How Were #Arron_Banks & #Farage Funded …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 19/10/2017

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Hi,

Mystery deepens over secret source of Brexit ‘dark money’

Only one major pro-Leave donor refuses to distance himself from controversial £435,000, which bankrolled DUP’s Brexit spending spree.

lead Richard Cook, chair of the secretive group that channelled £435,000 to the DUP, is interviewed at his home by Channel 4’s Alex Thomson. Image used under Fair Use: Channel 4. All rights reserved.A number of major political donors have denied they are the source of a controversial £435,000 donation to the DUP’s Brexit campaign, openDemocracy can reveal today – with only one person refusing to distance themself from the secret donation.

openDemocracy has investigated a list of key figures in relation to the donation, and all apart from one have either denied involvement or have made public statements indicating opposition to Brexit. The only person we contacted who has told us he will not comment is Henry Angest, a banker and longstanding Conservative party donor, who is known to be a supporter of Brexit. 

Continuing secrecy raises pressing questions about transparency in UK politics.

There is no evidence to suggest that Angest, nor any of the other figures we have contacted, are the source of the £435,000. Nor is there any suggestion that whoever gave this unprecedented sum to the DUP’s Leave campaign broke any laws.

But the continuing secrecy raises pressing questions about transparency in UK politics – particularly as Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party now holds the balance of power in parliament, propping up Theresa May’s minority government as it negotiates Brexit.

The UK government announced earlier this year that it will change the law to end donor secrecy in Northern Ireland, but has rejected calls to backdate the law to 2014, so that the source of the DUP donation could be revealed. Government and DUP sources have rejected accusations that this is ‘protection’ for the DUP, as part of their £1 billion deal to keep the Conservatives in power.

One consistent clue

Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has repeatedly refused to reveal the source of the cash, which was spent on lavish pro-Leave campaigning in the weeks before Brexit. But we have consistently been given one clue as to where the money came from: that those behind the donation are passionate supporters of the Union between the four nations of the UK.

After openDemocracy first revealed the scale of the secret donation, DUP leader Arlene Foster was grilled about it on the BBC Northern Ireland show ‘The View’. She said that the money came from “an organisation in England that wants to see the Union kept”. Later that month, under continued pressure, her party disclosed that the money came from “pro-Union business people”, via a little-known group called the Constitutional Research Council (CRC). Glasgow-based Richard Cook, who chairs the CRC, has claimed that the group was set up to promote the Union, and has also revealed that Scottish people are among the donors.

openDemocracy has since investigated every major political donor who fits this profile. In particular, we contacted everyone who gave £25,000 or more to oppose independence in the run-up to the 2014 Scottish referendum, and asked each donor from that group (apart from those already on record as Remain supporters) if they were the source of the DUP donation.

The findings of our investigation are below.

Ruling out Remainers

‘Vote to Leave the EU’. Flickr/David Holt. CC-by-2.0.In February, we discovered that the £435,000 had been channelled to the DUP via a little-known group, the Constitutional Research Council (CRC). The DUP Brexit campaign manager Jeffrey Donaldson MP has described the CRC as “a group which supports constitutional pro-Union causes”. He added: “they believed, as did we, that Brexit would be good for the Union and bad for those who oppose it.” 

Our first step was to eliminate from our enquiries all the pro-Union donors who have also – vocally or financially – supported the Remain campaign. These include Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who gave a million pounds to the pro-Union Scottish campaign, Better Together, and has also spoken repeatedly in public about her support for EU membership. Donald Houston, whose firm Raindance Investments Ltd gave £200,000 to the pro-Union campaign in 2014, also contributed to the Remain campaign. The billionaire banker Bruno Schroder made significant donations to Better Together, the Remain campaign, and the Kensington Conservative party.

Ian Taylor’s company Vitol, the world’s largest oil trader, was fined $7 million in 2007 for paying $13 million in kickbacks to Iraqi officials during the Saddam Hussein era. Taylor is also the majority shareholder in Harris Tweed Hebrides and chairman of the board of the Royal Opera House. He was a major donor to Better Together before the Scottish independence referendum, and also to the Remain campaign in 2016.

Orion Engineering is also an important player in Scotland’s oil industry, led by Alan Savage. The firm, which specialises in recruitment, gave £50,000 to Better Together ahead of the Scottish referendum. The firm has not responded to our attempts to contact Savage, but given that the firm has also supported the Liberal Democrats (opponents of Brexit), and in 2015 Savage wrote that “being part of the European Union is fundamental to my business”, and that “leaving the EU is a completely absurd idea”, we have ruled him out of our enquiries. 

“Mr Sansom knows nothing about this shower”

Next, there were those pro-Union donors who told us that they supported the Remain campaign, or vocally distanced themselves from the DUP deal.

Author Christopher Sansom is reported on the Electoral Commission website as having given £200,000 to Better Together (though The Scotsman has previously put the figure at £294,000). Speaking to openDemocracy via his agent, he confirmed that he “knows nothing about this shower”, and was a Remain supporter. 

Conservative peer Andrew Fraser is reported on the Electoral Commission website as having given £100,000 to Better Together of which he was treasurer, and also gave £20,000 to the “Let’s Stay Together” campaign (again, this number has been reported in the Scotsman as being higher). He was ennobled in David Cameron’s resignation honours, and, when asked by openDemocracy if he supported a Remain vote said, “I certainly did”.

The Scottish businessman Alan McFarlane, who is chairman of the advisory board of the think tank “Reform Scotland” and founder and senior partner of Edinburgh based investment management company Dundas Partners LLP, gave £20,000 to the Unionist “Vote No Borders” campaign, and also £10,000 to the “WSF2014 Ltd” pro-union campaign. Asked about the Constitutional Research Council, he told openDemocracy “I know nothing about them”, and sources confirmed that he was a Remain supporter.

Angus MacDonald, who made his fortune in the financial information industry and now works in recycling in Scotland, ran his own pro-Union campaign in 2014. He confirmed that he had “no idea about any of this”. The Constitutional Research Council chair Richard Cook also works in the waste management industry in Scotland, but MacDonald said he had “never heard of Richard Cook.”

The Earl of Seafield is the chieftain of Clan Grant and one of Scotland’s biggest landowners. It was the previous Earl of Seafield who, as Scotland’s Chancellor, signed the Act of the Union in 1707, famously saying, “there’s ane end of ane auld sang”. The current Earl made a donation of £100,000 under the name “Sir Ian Seafield” to the Better Together campaign, while his Reidhaven Trust Estate Ltd made a further donation of £20,000. Asked about the DUP donation, his spokesperson confirmed that “Lord Seafield does indeed know nothing about this”.

Banker Ivor Dunbar, former co-head of global capital markets at Deutsche Bank, gave £50,000 to Better Together in 2012. Dunbar is chairman of the Scottish based gap-year charity Project Trust, and has told openDemocracy he knows “nothing about the matters to which you refer”. 

Jimmy Milne is chairman and managing director of the Balmoral Group, a major player in the Scottish oil industry. His firm gave £58,000 to Better Together, but his spokesperson also confirmed that “he has no knowledge of the CRC or Richard Cook so is unable to assist with your enquiry”.

The Buccleuch Estates Limited, the company owned by the Duke of Buccleuch, gave a total of £55,724 to various pro-Union campaigns ahead of Scotland’s referendum, but confirmed to openDemocracy that they know nothing about the £435,000 donation to the DUP.

Sir David Garrard, a major Labour donor and Better Together supporter to the value of £25,000, told us that “I can confirm that I have never given directly, or knowingly indirectly, a penny piece to the DUP”.

Sir Edward Percy Keswick Weatherall’s family fortune comes from its controlling share of the bank Jardine Matheson, which played a notable role in the 19th century Opium Wars, an episode of British history so bloody that it caused William Gladstone to say at the time that he lived “in dread of the judgments of God upon England for our national iniquity towards China”.

Weatherall made a donation of £50,000 to Better Together ahead of the vote in Scotland in 2014. He has told openDemocracy that he was not involved in any donation to the Constitutional Research Council, and has never heard of the organisation or of its chair, Richard Cook. 

Mark Bamford, whose family firm owns the iconic heavy-machinery company JCB gave a £74,747.47 donation to a group called the Scottish Research Society ahead of the 2014 referendum. openDemocracy investigations have ascertained that The Scottish Research Society’s registered address was a flat in Edinburgh which belonged to Christopher Monckton, the former UKIP deputy leader and prominent climate change denier (and subject of previous openDemocracy investigations). However, Bamford responded to our queries saying “I am sorry I am unable to assist and any donations that may have been made are in the public domain.”

Malcolm Offord ran his own pro-Union campaign, named “Vote No Borders”, to which he personally donated £20,000, and which attracted a number of other substantial donations. Offord previously worked in the City, and moved back to Scotland to establish his own firm “Badenoch & Co”.

Badenoch’s office sits at the heart of Edinburgh’s New Town on the top floor of a building otherwise occupied by the firm Murray Capital, owned by the controversial former Rangers owner David Murray. Together, they face across Charlotte Square to Bute House, the official residence of the First Minister of Scotland.

In 2016, Offord spoke in favour of a Leave vote, and he is well connected with the Unionist, political and business worlds in Scotland. However, his office has told us that he knows nothing about the donation to the Constitutional Research Council and the DUP.

The Marquess of Salisbury and Stalbury trustees

Hatfield House. Imaged used under Fair Use: http://www.hatfield-house.co.uk/. All rights reserved.Stalbury Trustees, who gave to Better Together, are regular donors to the Conservative party. Their trustees include the Marquess of Salisbury, a former leader of the Conservatives in the House of Lords who is known to have supported a Leave vote. Salisbury has long taken an interest in Northern Irish Unionism, and, in 2010, hosted talks between the Conservatives and Northern Irish Unionist parties, including prominent DUP figures, at his home, Hatfield House, in Hertfordshire.

The Marquess of Salisbury is also a donor to the think tank Open Europe. As openDemocracy has previously revealed, one Open Europe former staff member, Christopher Howarth, is now responsible for the European Research Group – the secretive pro-Brexit MP group which received funding from the Constitutional Research Council when it was chaired by the now Brexit minister, Steve Baker. Another former Open Europe staffer, Raoul Ruparel, now works as a Special Adviser in the Department for Exiting the EU alongside Steve Baker, the former ERG chair.

‘No one involved with Stalbury is aware of the specific donation which you mention.’

openDemocracy wrote to Mr Ulric David Barnett, who is secretary of the trust (and lists his profession as “gentleman”). We received a phone call from the mailroom of a legal firm named Forsters, in Mayfair. The address belongs to them, and they initially claimed they knew no one of that name. However, we eventually managed to establish that the trust is, in fact, a client of the firm. After emailing and telephoning the relevant lawyer, we finally received this statement:

“I can tell you that Stalbury has made no donation to the Constitutional Research Council, nor, directly or indirectly, to the Democratic Unionist Party and no one involved with Stalbury is aware of the specific donation which you mention.”

The distillers William Grant and Sons, who produce whiskies including Glenfiddich and Balvenie, donated £135,000 to Better Together, and £25,000 each to the separate pro-Union campaigns “Vote No Borders”, run by the businessman Malcolm Offord, and £25,000 to the campaign run by the previously mentioned Angus MacDonald. After chasing up our letters to them, we received a phone call from Jack Irvine, CEO of Media House International, who told us that he had arranged the Better Together donation, and that “I can assure you there was no connection” between the company and the Constitutional Research Council or the DUP. 

The Vestey family

There is one major Unionist donor who has not responded to our repeated attempts to contact him.

The Vestey family are heirs to a vast meat processing fortune, and one of their firms, Western United Investment Management Ltd, gave £40,000 to Better Together. Lord Samuel Vestey is Master of the Horse in the Royal household, and perhaps best known in the UK for the ‘horse meat scandal’, in which his firm supplied horse meat, labelled as beef, to a number of major outlets in 2013. In Australia, he is notorious for the more serious allegation that he used Aboriginal people as “virtual slaves”, leading to the iconic “Wave Hill Walk Off” in 1966 and remembered in the Australian protest song, “From little things, big things grow”. Both Vestey and his father served in the Scots Guards.

We have been unable to establish whether Lord Vestey took a firm public position on the EU referendum, but in an interview with Farmers’ Weekly in April this year he talked about how difficult Brexit would be for farmers, and worried about the shock to British voters as a result of what he called a “divorce settlement” – not language traditionally associated with Leave supporters.

The Vesteys have not responded to our repeated attempts to contact them. 

Henry Angest and Arbuthnot Latham

There is one major donor to the Unionist cause in 2014 who is known to have supported Brexit, and who has refused to deny involvement in the DUP donation.

Sir Henry Angest, Chairman and Chief Executive of Arbuthnot Banking Group PLC. Image used under Fair Use: Arbuthnot Banking Group PLC. All rights reserved.Henry Angest is a Swiss-born banker with an estate in Bridge of Cally, Perthshire. He is chairman and chief executive of the private bank Arbuthnot Latham, owner of the firm Flowidea, and a former treasurer of the Conservative party. He has given over £1.9 million to the Conservative party and made headlines when he was given a knighthood by David Cameron, causing what the Daily Mail called a “cash for titles storm”. He made headlines again when, in 2013, it was revealed that Secure Trust Bank plc, of which he was chair, owned the controversial high-cost loans company Everyday Loans, which was reported to charge interest at an average of 74.8% APR. His bank sold the company in April 2016.

Angest’s firm Flowidea gave £100,000 to Better Together in 2014, and £10,000 to the “North East says No” campaign, against devolution to the North East of England, in 2004. His Arbuthnot Banking Group gave £20,000 to the Vote No campaign in the referendum on the Alternative Vote in 2011. In 2016 alone, Arbuthnott gave £68,500 to the Conservative party, Flowidea gave £185,000 and Angest himself gave £2,000 to the Perth and Kinross Conservatives. 

Angest publicly backed Brexit, and, we are told, has long been involved in the Eurosceptic movement. Despite being a prolific donor to the causes he believes in, neither he, nor Flowidea, nor Arbuthnot, nor any of the 22 companies he is currently or has ever been a director of, are listed with the Electoral Commission as having registered any donations to any of the Leave campaigns in Great Britain.

However, investigations by The Observer in 2010 showed that he had given funds in 2006 to the Freedom Association – a right-wing group which has a number of ties to the Constitutional Research Council, through which the DUP donation was channelled. Steve Baker, the current Brexit minister, was a member of the Freedom Association until “around 2013”, the organisation told openDemocracy. Baker took a donation from the CRC in December 2016 for his work with the European Research Group. As openDemocracy has previously revealed, Richard Cook, CRC chair, has spoken at Freedom Association events, and was the Scottish representative of the Campaign Against Political Correctness – an organisation with very close links to the Freedom Association. In 2007, the two key DUP MPs, Jeffrey Donaldson and Sammy Wilson, were involved in a Freedom Association ‘fact-finding mission’ to Northern Ireland. Donaldson was the DUP’s Brexit campaign manager.

There is one major donor to the Unionist cause in 2014 who is known to have supported Brexit, and who has refused to deny involvement in the DUP donation.

Angest, like the Marquess of Salisbury, has also previously funded the group Open Europe, whose former staff members (as mentioned above) include Christopher Howarth, who now runs the CRC-funded European Research Group, and Raoul Ruparel, now a special adviser in the Department for Exiting the EU.

Finally, Mr Angest has also been a donor to the controversial organisation Atlantic Bridge, which brings together the British and the American neo-Conservative right and whose UK director was listed in 2009 as the Scottish businessman Adam Werritty, whose links to Liam Fox caused the latter to resign in disgrace as defence secretary in 2011.

Angest’s office eventually responded to our attempts to contact him, saying that they “have no comment on this matter”. We informed him that he was the only known Brexit-backer in our survey not to distance themselves from this donation, and asked again if he wanted to comment. His office didn’t reply.

We have no evidence to suggest that Henry Angest is the source of the DUP donation, and he is welcome to contact us to clarify the matter.

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‘Substantial’ fine linked to DUP’s secret Brexit donors

Former minister demands answers on £6,000 fine, questioning legality of DUP’s mystery source of Brexit cash

DUP leader Arlene Foster and UK prime minister Theresa May. Image, gov.uk, fair use.

A former Europe minister has today called for a “full and proper investigation” into a controversial £435,000 donation towards the DUP’s Brexit campaign, as new details emerge of a substantial fine linked to the transaction.

Theresa May’s allies in parliament, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), have always insisted that the donation, channelled via a secretive group known as the Constitutional Research Council (CRC), complied fully with the law.

However, openDemocracy has now learned that a £6,000 fine imposed by the Electoral Commission and paid in full last month was connected to the CRC. Labour MP Chris Bryant has written to the Northern Ireland Secretary, James Brokenshire, stating that it “cannot possibly be right” for details of one of the highest-ever fines imposed by the Electoral Commission to be kept secret.

“Failures by a regulated entity”

The Electoral Commission revealed on its website last month (as first spotted by The Detail) that it had imposed a £6,000 sanction connected to a political donation in Northern Ireland, but gave no name, offence, or summary of the decision. The Commission stated only that it imposed the penalty due to “failures by a regulated entity” but could not “disclose further information” because of legal restrictions.

Bryant has asked Brokenshire to confirm who the “regulated entity” is, and whether the fine relates to the unprecedented £435,000 donation given to Mrs May’s Westminster allies, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), in order to campaign for Brexit.

The £435,000 donation – a much larger sum than the DUP has ever spent on an electoral campaign in its history – attracted particular controversy because almost none of the cash was spent in Northern Ireland. Yet the donor secrecy laws which apply to Northern Ireland, and not the rest of the UK, have allowed the donors(s) to remain anonymous.

In his letter to the Northern Ireland Secretary, Bryant says of the Electoral Commission’s £6,000 fine:

“Whatever the rights and wrongs of maintaining secrecy about financial donations in Northern Ireland, it cannot possibly be right to keep secret the details of a regulated entity being found to have broken electoral law and being fined a substantial amount. No other judicial or quasi-judicial decision of this nature is kept secret in the UK.”

“No comment”

The Electoral Commission’s office in Belfast would make no comment on their own investigation nor on the casework that led to the high-level fine.

However, political sources in Northern Ireland with knowledge of the Commission’s affairs have confirmed to openDemocracy that the substantial sanction was connected to the Constitutional Research Council (CRC) – the secretive group that channelled the £435,000 to the DUP in Belfast.

The £6,000 fine was paid in full to the Commission on August 30.

openDemocracy contacted the CRC’s chair, Glasgow-based Richard Cook, and asked him to confirm details of the fine; why his organisation had been sanctioned by the Electoral Commission, and what part of Northern Ireland’s electoral law had been broken. He was also repeatedly asked why both he and the DUP had insisted no laws had been broken, and when he had learned that the Commission was investigating the cash transfer.

Throughout the conversation, Mr Cook was given multiple opportunities to dismiss the listed £6,000 fine as nothing to do with the Constitutional Research Council or the DUP. He declined to do so, or to make any further comment.

End donor secrecy

After openDemocracy first revealed the scale of the secret donation to the DUP earlier this year, we reported on Mr Cook’s business connections to a former Saudi spy boss and to an individual with alleged links to a major arms scandal, and yesterday published the results of our investigation into a list of key figures in relation to the donation.

Although current electoral rules in Northern Ireland allow political parties to protect the identities of donors and funding, the government is expected to announce this will soon change.

However the UK government’s policy strategy on full transparency is likely to be highly influenced by their £1 billion deal with the DUP. The Conservative party’s minority government is being propped up in parliament by the DUP, and any change which exposed the DUP-CRC donation arrangement is likely to be resisted.

Rather than backdate transparency rules to 2014 – which would reveal the source of the £435,000 DUP cash – Brokenshire announced earlier this year that the change, which will be made through secondary legislation, would only apply to donations and loans received after 1st July 2017.

Government and DUP sources have denied that this is ‘protection’ for the DUP, as part of their deal to keep the Conservatives in power.

‘A full and proper investigation?’

Last month the Electoral Commission published details of a £3,500 fine on UKIP related to campaign expenditure.

In June, the Commission fined the owner of Butlin’s, Peter Harris, £12,000 for breaking spending return rules. Mr Harris spent £420,000 on the Leave campaign in last year’s EU referendum.

Also in June, the DUP were fined £4,000 for failure to complete campaign expenditure returns for the 2016 Assembly elections.

Bryant’s letter to Mr Brokenshire regarding the mystery £6,000 fine pointedly ends: “Does the fine relate to the DUP’s donation from the CRC? Will you launch a full and proper investigation into how the money was spent? And will you ensure that the truth comes to light?”

This is day two of openDemocracy’s week-long #BrexitDarkMoney series. See yesterday’s revelations here and our reasons for publishing this series here.

We need your help to expose the DUP

Theresa May is desperately clinging to power, relying on the DUP, the hard-right party that has blocked same-sex marriage, and kept abortion illegal.

Worse still, they’re bankrolled by dark money – we’ve exposed the shady group behind their lavish pro-Brexit campaigning, but they’re still refusing to name their secret donors. Now they hold the balance of power at Westminster, it’s even more vital that we find out who their paymasters are.

Can you chip in to boost our investigation now, so that we can expose the dark money bankrolling British politics?

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How did Arron Banks afford Brexit?

The self-styled ‘bad boy’ who bankrolled the Leave campaign appears to have exaggerated his wealth. So how did he pay for his Brexit spree?

lead Arron Banks in 2014, when he pledged £1million to the UK Independence Party. Ben Birchall/PA Images. All rights reserved.

In September 2013, the man who bought Brexit – Arron Banks – was in trouble. 

For the past two years, financial regulators in Gibraltar had been scrutinising his insurance under-writer, Southern Rock. They had discovered it was keeping reserves far below what was needed.

This was a serious problem. Banks claimed he had already provided £40 million to plug the hole. He also told the regulator he would step down as a director, but has since been required to find an eye-watering £60 million in extra funding. 

A year later, these financial worries seem to have completely evaporated. Banks had begun buying diamond mines, investing millions into chemical companies and wealth management firms, setting up loss-making political consultancies, and most famous of all – funding the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP). 

One question remains though. If Banks was in such a tight spot in September 2013, how did he manage to be so generous the following year?

Over the past four months, openDemocracy has conducted an in-depth review of Bank’s business dealings since he first started out in business in the early 2000s. As well as his own public statements about the sources of his wealth, we have spoken to his former employers, and obtained and reviewed court documents. There are of course a number of perfectly innocent ways that Banks could have obtained the extra funds, but given Banks’ significance to British politics, what have found so far is extremely troubling. 

“Quite good at persuading people to buy things they didn’t want to buy”

Banks had started out selling vacuum cleaner appliances door to door in Basingstoke in the late 1980s. “I was quite good at persuading people to buy things they didn’t want to buy,” he told the New Statesman in October 2016. He also briefly worked as an estate agent, and ran a failed bid to become a Conservative councillor. He married young and was soon the father of two daughters. 

After leaving school with few qualifications, he had eventually found himself in a junior position in the Lloyds’ insurance market. This is where Banks gained his first exposure to the industry, where syndicates of insurers spread risks between themselves and traded financial assets to cover their positions. Banks spent seven years at Lloyds’, working his way into a junior underwriting position before he moved to Bristol, following a split from his first wife.

If Banks was in such a tight spot in September 2013, how did he manage to be so generous the following year?

It is here the cracks in Banks’ biography start to appear. Banks has claimed he was promoted and rose to lead his own sales team at Norwich Union – now part of Aviva. However, Aviva say they have no record of Banks ever having worked for Norwich Union. He has also claimed to have worked for Warren Buffett around this point in his career. We asked Buffett about this. He replied. “I have no memory of ever hearing of the name Arron Fraser Andrew Banks. He certainly never worked for me.” Further checks across the Berkshire Hathaway group, made by Buffett’s office, yielded no evidence he had ever worked for any of his subsidiaries. In a letter delivered by his lawyers, Banks declined to comment on either of these points. 

In 1998, Banks got taken on by a tiny broker focussed on motorcycle insurance run from offices above a shop in the sleepy village of Thornbury. He was granted a 20% shareholding in the fledgling business. In November 2000, he resigned as a director of the firm, and two months later, sold his shares for £251,000. 

Shortly afterwards, Banks met the woman who was to become his second wife, a Portsmouth-based Russian called Ekaterina Paderina. According to the Sunday Times, Paderina’s former husband had been interviewed twice by Special Branch because they suspected her of working for the Russian government. Ekaterina moved to join Banks in Bristol but stayed on the electoral roll in Portsmouth until 2008, still registered to a council flat overlooking the naval base. When Portsmouth Council found out she should not have been entitled to the flat because she was living with Banks, council officials reportedly demanded a cash payment be made by the Banks family in recompense.

Banks and Ekaterina wed in 2001 and in the autumn of that year Banks set up his own insurance company, with financial backing from his relatives and from the Northern Irish insurance tycoons, Leslie Hughes and James Bowers. The business focused on motorcycle, motorhome and van insurance.

The new businesses were also the first he formed with two men who would become his long term business partners, the Australian solicitor Jim Gannon and the accountant Paul Chase-Gardener.

In June this year, the Financial Times published their own analysis of the overlapping businesses of Arron Banks, the “Bad Boy of Brexit”, and its editor Lionel Barber quite reasonably asked on Twitter: “but how rich is he really?”. 

Banks fumed in a tweeted reply: “I founded and sold a listed insurance business for £145m! Not even mentioned – no FT, fake news.” That listed company was Brightside.

The amounts Banks has given to British politics are extraordinary.

The amount Banks made from the sale of Brightside is crucial to understanding whether Banks is really as rich as he says he is.

Company documents we have reviewed show Banks made £22 million from share sales, £1.2 million in salary from serving as the group’s CEO and Chief Insurance Officer, and just £270,000 in dividends.

So when Banks had told the Financial Times in 2015 he was worth £100 million, where did this valuation come from? More importantly, if he only made £22 million from Brightside share sales – where did all this cash for Brexit campaigning come from? 

The amounts Banks has given to British politics are extraordinary. A total of £6 million in loans, still outstanding, was made to Leave.EU. He famously pledged £1 million to UKIP in 2014, at a time when the organisation’s finances were stalling. Without Banks, the political potency of the party may well have fizzled out. In 2016, his company, Better for the Country Ltd, also bought almost £2 million in pro-Brexit merchandise and donated it to Grassroots Out, another Brexit campaigning group. In total, his political contributions have come to nearly £10 million. 

That would mean he might have given away almost half of what he made from Brightside to political causes. That seems amazingly generous.

“Serious and widespread failings” 

As his own tweeted rebuke of the Financial Times suggested, central to the Banks mythology is the sale of Brightside Plc. in 2014. The buyer was private equity firm Anacap. Although he tweeted that the sale had been for £145 million, it was reported at the time as being worth only £127 million. How much, though, did Banks get? 

The story starts in 2001 when Banks set up Group Direct, which was the principal operating company for his insurance brand Commercial Vehicle Direct. Group Direct made losses of over £400,000 in its first two years of operation, before finally turning a profit in 2004. 

By 2006, overall debts had increased to £34 million, but the group appeared to be growing strongly, with turnover of £20 million. Banks began to aim for a public listing of the group. The same year, he became a director of Brightside, at that time a recently formed debt management service aimed at the personal insolvency market. Crucially, Brightside was already listed on AIM, the junior stock exchange.

In June 2008, the original Banks insurance group took part in a transaction known as a ‘reverse takeover’, in which a listed company takes over a much larger unlisted company. This allows the unlisted company to obtain a listing on a stock exchange quicker than usual. Under the terms of the deal, Brightside duly bought the three companies which constituted Group Direct. The £50 million valuation put on these companies seemed high but the deal did not boost Banks’ bank account – as the consideration for the deal was in Brightside shares. 

Then, in 2008, the financial crisis hit. As with many businesses, Banks’ lending facilities came under pressure. But Banks was still able to raise money from Brightside’s shareholders: in 2009 and 2010 the company raised a total of £29 million, attracting investors with its eye-catching growth rate and ambitious plans to acquire other companies. 

Two of the assets Banks’ firm acquired were the little-known insurance brands “E-Car” and “E-Bike.” The price was an initial £15.5 million, with £19.1 million deferred, based on future profitability.

In fact, both brands were owned by Southern Rock Insurance, a company of which Banks, Gannon and Chase-Gardener collectively owned 72%.

Two other companies, “E Systems” and “E Development” were bought for a further £17 million in 2011. At the time E Development had net liabilities of over £500,000. E-systems had been set up just months before the sale by Banks, and Brightside IT director Simon Jones. It had no other customers than Brightside.

These acquisitions seem hard to justify, but in documents sent to Brightside shareholders notifying them of the proposed purchase of E-Systems and E-Development, the company stated that they had received undertakings from Banks and his fellow directors that the funds would be used to shore up the firms under-writer, Southern Rock, and thus allow Brightside to continue trading. And this is, indeed, what happened.

However, within the year Banks was fired from his role at Brightside. He famously recounted how he punched his partner and friend, Jim Gannon, in the face, when the solicitor broke the news to him. 

Banks remained a shareholder in Brightside and in 2013, sold a tranche of his shares for £6 million to a competitor, Markerstudy, which was said to be contemplating a bid for the company. After conducting due diligence and negotiating with the Brightside board however, Markerstudy declined to make a full bid, with their CEO describing Brightside as “over-valued”.

In 2014, the investment firm Anacap arrived and thought differently. They bought Brightside in its entirety, paying £127 million to take control. 

Anacap have since alleged in court that the new management team discovered “serious and widespread failings” throughout the company, many dating from Banks’ time as CEO and Chief Insurance Officer. All of the purchases of Banks’ companies (E-Car, E-Bike, E-Systems, and E Development) were confirmed to be worth far less than had been paid for them. The software supplied by E-systems was said to barely function and the Brightside website was hacked and remained inoperable for over a month. Court documents obtained during our investigation allege widespread failings, including an incendiary allegation that the company was “in breach of its banking covenants and insolvent on a net asset basis.” There were also, according to the same documents, no correct systems in place for the handling of client funds. 

All of the purchases of Banks’ companies were confirmed to be worth far less than had been paid for them.

For an insurance company, this was a particularly serious problem. Anacap replaced several senior staff and board members including the CFO, Paul Chase-Gardener. Over £35 million of value had to be written off from the Brightside balance sheet, in part because Anacap deemed the E-Car, E-Bike, E-Systems and E-Development purchases had been grossly overvalued. Within a year of the takeover, the new owners also had to plough in an additional £40 million to prevent the business from going bust. Further large write downs were made in 2015. Court documents show that £12 million had to be inserted in a failed attempt to repair the IT system alone, with numerous other consultants brought in to clear up the problems the new owners found.

openDemocracy asked Banks to comment on Anacap’s view of the value of these businesses. He declined to reply to our specific questions, instead sending a copy of a letter which his lawyers wrote to the BBC in May of this year. In this letter his lawyers say: “The offer from Anacap to acquire Brightside was announced in May 2014 nearly two years after Mr Banks had left the company.” 

In 2016, Anacap began legal action against Chase-Gardener and Brightside’s auditors for failures to adequately manage the business and present accurate financial reports. With the assistance of his brother Jonathan, a Hong Kong based lawyer, Banks was able to settle out of court in May 2015. Privately, many of the new senior management team brought in by Anacap wanted to pursue the case against him. As part of their settlement with Banks, Anacap were able to extricate Brightside from contracts with other Banks controlled businesses, such as Southern Rock, which they described as “onerous.” The case against Chase-Gardener is still being pursued in the High Court, where Anacap are seeking £20 million in damages from him. The auditors, BDO (now part of RMS Tenon), are facing a claim of around £50 million. 

Southern Rock in difficulty

Arron Banks with former UKIP leader Nigel Farage. Ben Birchall/PA Images. All rights reserved.While at Brightside, Banks had been able to partly re-finance the ailing Southern Rock, through buying E-Cars, E-Systems, E-Development and E-Bike from the Gibraltar based group. But the Gibraltar Financial Services Commission had also passed their report to the Financial Conduct Authority in London for review.

The authorities in London concurred with the Gibraltar regulator’s findings, that Southern Rock had been trading without sufficient reserves, and in 2013 Banks voluntarily recused himself from the FCA register. He stepped down as a director of Southern Rock in 2014. Both regulators had effectively barred him from holding a position of control within an insurance business. 

He also had to balance the books. While the funds from the sale of E-systems and E-development were passed to Southern Rock, this still left the business short of the capital needed to fund its loss reserves as the company struggled with high claim levels and a challenging market. He told Private Eye he had agreed to find £40 million to re-capitalise the business. Banks claims that Southern Rock is now a profitable company. The letter from his lawyers to the BBC, forwarded to openDemocracy, says “Southern Rock Insurance Company Limited recorded a profit of £42 million in its latest set of filed accounts (2015).”

Banks frequently boasts about running an insurance business. The reality is that he is not permitted, at the moment, to run his own insurance company.

In fact, the accounts show an underlying loss of £27.9 million on its underwriting and insurance activities in 2015 – and while the company did report a profit of £41.5 million overall, this came only after selling the rights to the “ancillary income” on its motor insurance policies for £17.5 million, and the rights to the “finance arrangement fees” for £60.2 million to another company owned by Banks, Isle of Man-based ICS Risk Solutions. Ancillary income is an umbrella term for any money an insurance company makes on top of ordinary under-writing risks, for example from instalments or administration charges. 

Given Southern Rock had only written 197,000 motor insurance policies at this time, paying nearly £78m for these rights seemed a high valuation. These assets had also not been recorded in the Southern Rock balance sheet prior to their sale, and resulted in the company booking a large capital gain. Crucially, it was the value of these sales that enabled Southern Rock to meet its obligation under the solvency regulations, and post a profit in its accounts for this year.

Whether Southern Rock will be able to do the same next year, which will likely be required under the terms of capital restructuring deal mandated by the regulators, is unclear. Banks strongly contests the assertion that Southern Rock is in difficulty, pointing out that the Gibraltar regulator, Southern Rock’s independent auditors and the London-based Financial Conduct Authority have approved the arrangements, and that all the payments to date from ICS Risk Solution, which Southern Rock relies on to remain solvent, have been made on time and in full. The letter from his lawyers states: “The future solvency of [Southern Rock] is not dependent on any particular future transaction.”

As for the regulators’ demand that Banks “voluntarily” recuse himself, he has abided by the ruling, but appointed his Hong Kong-based brother in his stead. His name and signature still appeared on a 2014 annual report filed at Companies House, where he was named as a “director.” “This mistake arose from an administrative error,” he told us in a written statement, “which was corrected as soon as it was detected. Once the error was noted, the accounts were withdrawn and resubmitted to Companies House.” He continues to control Southern Rock and Eldon Insurance, owner of the GoSkippy brand, through his holding company ICS Risk Solutions. 

Banks frequently boasts about running an insurance business. The reality is that he is not permitted, at the moment, to run his own insurance company. A letter from the Financial Conduct Authority concerning the investigation into his insurance activities, dated 17th July 2017, states that “Mr Banks does not have FCA approval to carry out an operational executive role at Eldon Insurance Services Ltd,” his new firm.

Banks’s Isle of Man-based ICS Risk Solutions is a curious organisation too. In theory, this is the ultimate holding company for Banks’s insurance empire. Yet according to a source with good knowledge of its finances, ICS Risk Solutions has just £1 million in assets, and still owes £60.2 million in monthly instalments, to Southern Rock. These payments are expected to continue until December 2020. A letter from Banks’ lawyers confirming this also said “there is no reason to doubt that the remaining outstanding amounts will be paid in full and on time,” and that Southern Rock is required to report monthly to the Gibraltar authorities, “to confirm the payment of each monthly instalment,” and so “any failure to pay would be immediately apparent.”

Banks’ present financial status is then somewhat unclear, and sometimes dependent on buying assets from one company, in order to shore up another company he himself holds a stake in. But it does seem clear that his claimed worth of £100 million is hard to justify. In the letter sent to openDemocracy, Banks claimed his worth could be even higher than £100 million, saying that he would “broadly agree” with an analysis made by the Sunday Times Rich Times list that his net worth could instead be some £250 million. When asked to explain how he accounts for all this extra wealth, Banks declined to comment.

A Lazarus-like recovery

Banks’s finances seem to have had a remarkable recovery in early 2014. But based on a full review of all the publicly available information about his companies, it is unclear where this money could have come from. 

He first had to settle a tax bill with HMRC for £1.86 million, a cheque which he subsequently sent to the Guardian newspaper to prove he was paying his taxes.

In April 2014, the MailOnline reported how Banks had raised eyebrows when he bought £2 million of shares in an AIM-listed chemicals company called Iofina – a sector he had shown no prior interest in. The company produces iodine in an industrial process which takes place alongside fracking. It had never turned a profit and swallowed up large amounts of capital as chemical prices shrank due to reduced demand. Banks’s investment is nursing a huge loss.

In June 2014, he set up Chartwell Political, a PR company which would go on to work on the Leave campaign with Jim Pryor, a former Tory party spokesman who had also worked on FW deClerk’s campaign against Nelson Mandela in South Africa and former Sunday Mirror editor Bridget Rowe, a close friend of Nigel Farage. The company would rack up losses of over £300,000 by June 2015.

Banks would go on to spend a total of £9.6 million of his personal fortune funding the organisations which arguably clinched Brexit. This accounted then for half of his lifetime earnings.

The next month, in July 2014, Banks bought more shares in STM Group plc, which offers “wealth preservation solutions,” and specialises in setting up offshore trusts and companies. He bought over £600,000 worth of shares – on top of an existing shareholding. This brought his total share value up to £1.5 million. 

By September 2014, Banks had also bought a loss-making, family-run jewellery shop in Bristol, for an undisclosed sum, and lent the firm some £200,000, and by February 2015 he was the owner of four diamond mines in South Africa.

The diamond market had fallen sharply since the financial crash and big players, such as de Beers, began to withdraw from older mines picked clean and requiring huge investment to return to profitable production. Many of these mines had changed hands several times in the years since. One of the mines Banks picked up had collapsed in value from a reported £12 million valuation in 2005, to as little as £200,000 by the time Banks bought.

One of the four mines also remains closed, according to Banks’s website, another contains just “tailings,” meaning there little more than piles of waste to scrabble through. What exactly motivated Banks to buy these mines remains unclear.

Crucially, October 2014 also marked the time Banks began his extraordinarily lavish political spending campaign, with his first £1 million pledge to the United Kingdom Independence Party. Interestingly, Banks never came fully good on this promise – dripping in just over £400,000 in cash instalments over the next six months. Nevertheless, Banks’s 2014 spending alone, or what can be seen of it from publicly available records, came to an estimated £5 million. This was a very large sum given the pressure he was under from the Gibraltar regulators. We also estimate it to be just under a quarter of his total gross earnings of £22m – from his various businesses – since 2001. 

Nor did his political spending slow down. Banks would go on to spend a total of £9.6 million of his personal fortune funding the organisations which arguably clinched Brexit: Leave.EU, UKIP and Better for the Country Ltd (set up by STM Fidecs). This accounted then for half of his lifetime earnings – an amazingly generous amount. 

One of his most lavish donations was some £2 million to Grassroots Out via Better for the Country Ltd, which was categorised to the Electoral Commission as “non-cash” – a designation usually reserved for the provision of office space or in-kind services to political parties. In reality, even this “non-cash” donation cost Banks significant amounts of hard cash. In a letter to openDemocracy, Banks’ lawyers say Better for the Country bought “merchandise, leaflets, billboards, pens, badges and other paraphernalia,” before donating all of this to Grassroots Out. 

In early 2016, he used Better for the Country to make cash donations to Trade Unionists Against the European Union, and another pro-Brexit group called Veterans for Britain. Banks also provided £100,000 to Martin Durkin, a climate change sceptic and producer of “Brexit: The Movie,” a controversial online documentary produced to support the campaign. The sum was equivalent to a third of the documentary’s reported budget.

These donations were all the more remarkable because his new insurance company, founded after Banks left Brightside, was now also requiring large amounts of investment, according to industry experts. Eldon Insurance achieved a profit of just £281,000 on a turnover of £33.6 million in 2015. 

Earlier this year, Banks attempted a £200m fundraising effort for Eldon, according to the Times, but was unable to raise the finance from City investors and abandoned the listing. Profits fell further in 2016, to just £165,000. Earlier this month, Banks announced he was attempting a second public listing, and aiming for a valuation of some £250m. He claims to be forecasting a dramatic increase in profits – anywhere between £25m and £28m for the year. To support this claim he provided the Mail on Sunday with unpublished figures showing the profits for the first six months of the year. We asked for a copy of these, but his spokesperson did not respond.

To drum up business, Banks’ insurance brand GoSkippy now advertises heavily on Leave.EU’s websites, social media and email marketing. However there are numerous reports of poor customer service, onerous terms obfuscated in confusing small-print and administrative failings by the company, some of which have left motorists unaware that they were no longer insured. In response, Banks commented that “Eldon works very hard on complaints and actively reviews its processes off the back of both internal and external audits of both customer service quality and compliance with regularity requirements,” saying their main brand GoSkippy had complaint levels below 3 per 1000 customers, and that a maximum of 4 per 1000 was the industry guideline.

Southern Rock, despite its difficulties both before and after the regulators’ intervention, has until very recently been the principal under-writer of both Banks’ Go Skippy brand and the Debenhams Insurance brand. The letter from Banks’ lawyers points out that the recapitalisation plan designed to allow Southern Rock to meet its solvency obligations were approved by the regulator and the company’s independent auditors and that they have a perfect record of delivering their monthly payments to date on time and in full. 

It is clear, however, that the company only posted a profit last year by relying on the £60 million generated from selling rights to other companies controlled by Banks. To continue to trade on a solvent basis in the years to come, Southern Rock will need to have a profitable underlying business, or have additional cash injections.

And Banks’ own Eldon Insurance, which owns GoSkippy, now plans to move its business from Southern Rock – instead setting up a “managing general agent” called Somerset Bridge, which will be arranging under-writing services from a different Gibraltarian under-writer, backed by a Bermuda-based reinsurer.

The fabric of our democracy 

Interestingly, our review of Banks’ business empire also shows a huge cross-over between the key figures in Leave.EU and Banks’ businesses. Leave.EU’s Chief Executive Officer Liz Bilney serves on the board of numerous Banks’ companies.

Leave.EU’s director of communications, the Belizean diplomat and close associate of Lord Ashcroft, Andy Wigmore, was appointed to the board of Southern Rock in 2014 and joined Eldon Insurance in December 2015, despite having no background within the industry. 

Crucial to maintaining the fabric of democracy in Britain is understanding where large donors have made their money, and just as importantly, how.

Banks holds a substantial share in Manx Financial, an Isle of Man banking group controlled by Leave.EU’s early backer and co-founder Jim Mellon. The meagre profits of Manx Financial have not yet provided dividends to its investors – including Banks. 

Crucial to maintaining the fabric of democracy in Britain is understanding where large donors have made their money, and just as importantly, how.

Our review of the publicly available records for Banks’ business empire, and his own public statements, has revealed a patchwork of legal disputes, regulator interventions, and poor corporate governance. Two of Banks’ claimed previous employers have denied he ever worked for them. The value of his businesses are materially lower than Banks’ own inflated boasts and, while still a wealthy man, was he wealthy enough to give so much to the Brexit campaign, without some other undisclosed source of income?

How Banks could afford to give so lavishly remains a mystery. There is no doubt that Banks did more than most to make Brexit happen – the question is, how could he afford it?

To view the original of this article CLICK HERE

MP calls for inquiry into Arron Banks and ‘dark money’ in EU referendum

Ben Bradshaw raises concerns over ‘foreign interference’ and says there are questions over wealth of leave campaign’s biggest backer

 
 
Arron Banks
The money given by Arron Banks to Leave.EU in the run-up to the referendum was the biggest donation in British political history. Photograph: Jonathan Brady/PA

A Labour MP has said there are “real questions” about how much Arron Banks – the entrepreneur who bankrolled Brexit – is worth as he called on the government to investigate the possible role played by “dark money” in the EU referendum.

Speaking in parliament, Ben Bradshaw said there was “widespread concern over foreign and particularly Russian interference in western democracies”. He described as “very worrying” a series of investigative reports published this week by the Open Democracy website into the funding of the Leave campaign.

The money given by Banks to Leave.EU in the run-up to the referendum was the biggest donation in British political history. The Bristol-based businessman says he contributed almost £9m in cash, loans and services to pro-Brexit causes. It is impossible to determine what impact – if any – his donations had on the result.

Banks has previously claimed he is worth £100m. An estimate by the Sunday Times puts his fortune at £250m. However, an analysis by Open Democracy suggests the actual figure may be considerably lower.

Bradshaw asked the leader of the Commons, Andrea Leadsom, if she had seen the reports “about the role of dark money in the EU referendum campaign”. They included “revelations of illegal donations” and “new questions today over the real wealth of Arron Banks, the main financial backer of leave”.

Bradshaw urged parliament and the Electoral Commission to examine these claims “very carefully”. Given the Kremlin’s role in influencing elections elsewhere, they should “reassure the country that all the resources spent in the referendum were from permissible sources”, he told MPs.

According to Bradshaw, the “illegal” donation to Brexit was made via the Democratic Unionist party in Northern Ireland. The person behind the £435,000 payment made in 2016 before the referendum remains a mystery. Rules have now been changed to introduce greater transparency, but it is unclear who – or what – lay behind these funds.

The analysis by Open Democracy says that in September 2013 Banks’s financial affairs were in trouble. His underwriting business Southern Rock was under scrutiny from financial regulators in Gibraltar and had reserves below what was required. Banks said he invested £40m in the business to plug any shortfall and resigned as a director.

“A year later, these financial worries seem to have completely evaporated. Banks had begun buying diamond mines, investing millions into chemical companies and wealth management firms, setting up loss-making political consultancies, and most famous of all – funding Ukip,” Open Democracy wrote.

The article adds: “One question remains though. If Banks was in such a tight spot in September 2013, how did he manage to be so generous the following year?”

There are a number of perfectly innocent ways that Banks could have obtained the extra funds, Open Democracy admits. Much of his wealth is held in opaque offshore jurisdictions including Belize, the Isle of Man, the British Virgin Islands and Gibraltar, making an assessment of his fortune difficult.

Banks didn’t immediately comment. His spokesman has previously described his businesses including Southern Rock as profitable and sustainable, and says that Banks “broadly agrees” with the £250m estimate of his fortune.

Replying for the government, Leadsom described Bradshaw’s question as “incredibly important” and said that any specific information concerning wrongdoing should be referred to the Electoral Commission.

“I absolutely share his concern that all donations should be permissible and legal,” she said.

To view the original of this article CLICK HERE

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Greg_L-W.

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