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Posts Tagged ‘Nigel Farage’

Peeling Back The Layers That Hide The Real Nigel Farage Part 1 …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 25/11/2018

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Peeling Back The Layers That Hide The Real Nigel Farage Part 1 …
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The corruption of EUkip’s leadership,
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Hi,

Who is the real Nigel Farage… and why won’t he answer my questions?

Trump… Russian TV… key witnesses in Robert Mueller’s investigation. The jokey ‘bloke with a pint’ now has a network that spreads well beyond the UK. Our reporter has spent months on the trail of Mr Brexit…

The first time I call Nigel Farage live on air on his LBC radio show, I give my real name. It’s Sunday 10 June 2018, the day the Observer reports that Arron Banks, the main funder of Farage’s Leave.EU campaign, had not one (as he had claimed), but several meetings with the Russian ambassador in the run-up to the EU referendum.

“What do you want to say to Nigel?” the producer asks. “I want to talk about how the funder of his campaign has systematically lied about his relationship with the Russian government,” I say. “I can’t put you through,” the producer says, an edge of panic in her voice. “Come on,” I say. “You’re a journalist. You know these are important questions. “I’m standing in,” she says. “I’m not the usual producer.” She promises to speak to her editor and call me back.

No one calls me back.

Two days later, I try again. Banks and his business partner Andy Wigmore, the spokesman for the Leave.EU campaign, are on the show to “answer questions”. It’s an interview in the best traditions of a Stalinist show trial – the man asking them the questions is the man whose campaign they funded – but even so, they sound spooked. It’s the only occasion in my time of reporting on them that I’ve heard them so subdued and serious.

There’s never been an issue with me discussing Farage on other LBC shows such as James O’Brien’s, but, again, I can’t get through. Minutes later, a friend does, and passes me the phone. Actually, I say, just as Farage has built up a head of steam about the Trump-Russia “witch hunt”, it’s Carole Cadwalladr from the Guardian and Observer. “I don’t want to talk to Carole Cadwalladr of the Guardian!” Farage says. In the video of the moment, you can see him frantically motioning his producer with his eyes. The phone line is cut.

Quick Guide

The rightwing world of Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage is so regularly on our airwaves and quoted in the press, but he is rarely held to account. At this point I’ve been writing about him for almost two years, and I have no way of asking him questions. His PR man almost never responds to messages. Doesn’t respond to interview requests.

And then on 7 September this year we finally meet. He’s on tour with a one-man show entitled An Entertaining Evening With Nigel Farage, which has just landed – somewhat bizarrely – in Melbourne, Australia. Everything is a bit different here. The day before the event, I receive a notification of a change of venue (were ticket sales perhaps not what Farage might have hoped?). The event has been moved from a mid-sized arena to the conference room of a city centre hotel.

What’s more, to get in, I have to fight my way through what feels like a running street battle. In Melbourne, Farage isn’t known as the Ukip man off the radio and telly. “He’s Donald Trump’s fascist sidekick and we don’t want his type here,” claims one of the protesters. He’s holding a placard that depicts Farage as a pig.

Inside, it’s different. The audience – overwhelmingly male, surprisingly young – laps up his well-rehearsed bonhomie. And afterwards, for an extra A$200 on my ticket fee, I get to hang out backstage with a select crowd drinking bad white wine. And then, here he is.

Hello, Nigel, I say, and introduce myself. He blinks. But, he doesn’t flee for the exit. Not straight away. It’s been frustrating, I say, because I’ve just wanted to ask you some direct questions. Will you do a proper interview with me?

“Well, I don’t know!” he says, with a flash of the trademark Farage charm. “Maybe. It depends what mood I’m in. I don’t work for you. I don’t have to do it, do I?”

No, I say, but you’re a public figure. You’re funded by taxpayers. The European Union funds you. We pay taxes that pay for you.

“Well, who funds you?” he says. “The Observer funds me,” I say.

“George Soros, is it?”

I can’t quite believe that he’s said this, apparently in all seriousness. Banks has also accused me of being funded by Soros. And I’ve heard Farage using the phrase in the European parliament. It’s a reference to George Soros, the Hungarian-born investor and philanthropist, who after the fall of communism, funded democracy-building institutions and movements across eastern Europe. He became a hate figure to the Russian government, who launched a propaganda campaign portraying him as a meddling Jewish banker.

Loading video
Watch video of the moment Nigel Farage hung up on Carole Cadwalladr.

What “funded by Soros” really means is: “funded by Jews”. It signals antisemitism to an audience without saying it directly. But the only audience is me. I’m gobsmacked. Could he actually believe this stuff?

“George Soros doesn’t fund me!” I say. “How could George Soros fund me?”

“Well I don’t know!” Farage says. “You think the Russians fund me!”

And then his minder appears. I have moments to put my question, the question that kicked it all off. Why did you visit Julian Assange? I say in a hurry.

“LBC organised that,” he says. “You seem to be so stuck in your sad little world. They sent me. LBC wanted the interview. You can’t seem to get that into your mind. Why would my press officer, I mean my producer, come with me?”

And then he’s gone.

It’s the briefest of brief encounters and yet our exchange is so instructive. Because from the Kremlin, “Soros” as a political smear spread to the likes of Hungary’s demagogue-in-training, Viktor Orbán, and was picked up a year ago by Farage. When the Electoral Commission opened an investigation into the sources of Arron Banks’s funding a year ago, Farage made a speech in the European parliament in which he blamed this development on Soros. “This is where the real international political collusion is.” From Britain, it leapfrogged to the US, where it’s been deployed by Trump supporters about the “caravans” of immigrants heading for the US border with Mexico. Last week, it descended to the final circle of this hell: Facebook. The New York Times reported that after the Cambridge Analytica scandal, Facebook hired a right-leaning opposition research firm who used accusations of “Soros funding” to smear the company’s critics. In a way, the anti-Soros propaganda illuminates everything I’ve been trying to understand about Farage’s place in today’s world: that he represents a bridge between the authoritarian far right parties of central and eastern Europe that are aligned with Russia, and Trump’s America.

It all feels a long way from West Kent golf club and the undulating greens outside Farage’s childhood home. His autobiography describes his time at Dulwich college from 1975 to 1982 (he left the public school with few if any O-levels – accounts vary), and how a meeting at the golf club led to his first job as a commodities trader on the London Metal Exchange with a minor City firm. For years, this has been the image that Farage has cultivated. The tweed jackets. The pints. The Little Englander who lived modestly in a Kent suburban home and spoke to Britain’s G&T belt. Even in 2014, he said in an interview that he realised he must reach beyond his core base, which he describes as “very middle class, very below the M4, ex-military”.

This is no longer Farage’s world. He left that world far behind some time ago. But there’s a time lag in Britain in understanding this. In understanding Farage’s relationships with the European far right. And in understanding that he’s using the same playbook as the Kremlin, Steve Bannon (Donald Trump’s former chief strategist) and Robert Mercer, who for a long time funded Bannon’s pet projects, including alt-right news site Breitbart, and Cambridge Analytica.

Here in the UK, Farage is still cosy Mr Brexit. He’s been touring the country running “Leave Means Leave” rallies – I went to one in a retail park in Bolton – where talk of medicine running out and lorries backed up on the motorway was denounced as yet more “Project Fear”. He’s the man who holds fast to an ideologically pure Brexit vision untainted by the realpolitik of Theresa May’s compromises. The man who broadcasts live on LBC five times a week and pops up on the BBC.

Critically, in Britain, where political coverage follows the beat of Westminster’s drum, we have yet to really catch up with Farage’s uncomfortable new position: in overlapping circles radiating from US special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 US election.

Could this be why Farage is avoiding me? He has refused to answer my questions for more than 18 months, since I wrote a report for the Observer – headlined When Nigel Farage met Julian Assange – published on 23 April last year. It posed a series of questions to which there are still no clear answers. Questions that, it’s become increasingly clear, cover some of the same territory that Mueller is circling.

Visiting Trump Tower in New York in December 2016 shortly after Donald Trump was elected president of the US.
Visiting Trump Tower in New York in December 2016 shortly after Donald Trump was elected president of the US. Photograph: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Farage was caught tripping down the steps of the Ecuadorean embassy by a reporter from BuzzFeed. “Nigel Farage just visited the Ecuadorean embassy in London,” the headline said. And the story said: “Asked by BuzzFeed News if he’d been visiting Julian Assange, the former Ukip leader said he could not remember what he had been doing in the building.”

The visit had come shortly after Farage had visited Donald Trump in Washington. BuzzFeed’s story involved three individuals, Trump, Assange and Farage, who were at the centre of the political storms that had changed the world in 2016 and raised a new set of questions.

Last week, 20 months after Farage’s meeting with Assange, LBC issued a statement about it: “It was an exploratory meeting to discuss the possibility of an interview for the station. This preliminary meeting amounted to nothing, which is why LBC has not previously commented on the context in which the meeting took place as this would not be customary. Whilst Nigel Farage attended the meeting, it was not set up at his instigation.”

It was the timings around the visit that raised questions. Farage left the embassy around noon. BuzzFeed’s story appeared at 1.31pm. At 2.28pm WikiLeaks made an announcement: it would host a live press conference with Assange about his latest leak, “Vault 7”, about mass CIA surveillance. This was during a week when things had started to look serious for Trump. Jeff Sessions, Trump’s attorney general, had been caught lying under oath about two meetings with the Russian ambassador and recused himself from the Russia inquiry. The “Vault 7” story , which landed US tech companies in the middle of CIA cyber-espionage, erupted on to the news cycle. It blew Russia off the front pages.

Later, in June 2017, the Guardian reported that Farage was a “person of interest” to the FBI. Last week Farage told the Sunday Times he had not spoken to Mueller’s team: “I’ve done nothing wrong, so why would I worry about it? I mean, it’s very funny, deranged.”

We don’t know if Farage is involved in the Russian intelligence operation that Mueller is so painstakingly unpicking. The investigation is in lockdown. But we know almost certainly that Assange is involved. An FBI indictment unsealed on 13 July said that at the heart of Russia’s operation to subvert the US presidential election is “Organization 1”, widely reported to be WikiLeaks.

It’s Mueller who’s identified this. It’s the FBI indictments that reveal that so many strands of the investigation run through London.

The third time I call Farage at LBC is 1 November 2018, the day Arron Banks is referred to the National Crime Agency because the Electoral Commission had decided it can’t be sure of the source of Banks’s multimillion-pound donation to Farage’s Leave.EU campaign. Or even that it came from Britain.

This time I’m “Claire from Ashford, Kent”. I’ve been thinking about Remembrance Sunday, I tell Farage. “It’s a real time to feel patriotic about our laws and sovereignty,” I say. “It certainly is,” says Farage. “It’s why I’m so concerned about these reports about not knowing where Arron Banks’s money comes from,” I say.

“I’m not discussing spending in the referendum here and now, Claire!” says Farage. The line goes dead.

Who is Nigel Farage? It’s no longer clear. When I Google “Nigel Farage” and “Soros”, I end up watching a video on the far-right conspiracy theory website InfoWars, in which Farage is being interviewed by its founder, Alex Jones. InfoWars Farage is very far from LBC Farage – even though the video is shot inside LBC’s studio, with the LBC logo behind him. This Farage talks about our shared “Judeo-Christian culture”. (Words not often heard, I can’t help thinking, in West Kent golf club.)

This is Steve Bannon’s language. The language of “globalists” and what Bannon pitches as an all-out war against the “elites”, an all-out war he’s now bringing to Europe with his latest project, a pan-European far-right coalition that he calls the Movement.

At a Trump rally in Mississippi in August 2016.
At a Trump rally in Mississippi in August 2016. Photograph: Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

“Farage has always followed the money,” a Ukip insider, who wishes to remain anonymous, tells me. “He knows which side his bread is buttered. When the US alt-right and evangelicals started supporting him, he became just like them.” And when I ask Greg Lance-Watkins, another key ex-Ukiper, how he’d describe his ideology he says: “Farage’s ideology is Farage.” In the 90s, Lance-Watkins used to advise Farage before his Question Time appearances. “He’s scared of the trick question. That’s why he won’t speak to you.

“He’s scared of you, because you confuse him. It’s like the old adage, don’t ask a question you don’t know the answer to. He doesn’t know what answer you’re looking for.”

But then neither do I.

It’s not until I sit through An Entertaining Evening With Nigel Farage in Melbourne that I realise he’s not just a seven-times failed UK parliamentary candidate, but a bona fide YouTube star. “I wouldn’t be where I am today without YouTube,” Farage tells his audience of young men. Men who, when I ask, what do you think of Nigel Farage, say: “He’s an absolute legend.” Or: “He’s the dog’s bollocks.”

How did you come across him, I ask, Alex, a programmer who lives locally? “On YouTube. I was watching a Jordan Peterson video. He was recommended to me.”

It’s an eye-opening moment. Jordan Peterson is the Canadian psychologist whose forthright views on women and why feminism is wrong have made him an alt-right YouTube breakout star. YouTube’s algorithm had connected him to Farage.

Loading video
One of RT’s many uploads of Farage speeches in the European parliament.

I watch the speeches. They have titles like “Who the Hell [sic] You Think You Are? Nigel Farage throws egg in Eurocrat faces.” And “Can’t Barrage the Farrage [sic].” They’ve been viewed millions upon millions of times.

Richard Corbett, the leader of the Labour party in the European parliament, explains how it works. “Farage turns up once a month and often what he talks about has absolutely nothing to do with what’s being discussed. You think, what’s going on? And then you realise it’s got nothing to do with the parliament. It’s just for his social media output. Sometimes he doesn’t even hang around for the answers. Two minutes later, he’s back on the Eurostar and gone.” (Statistics for voting and attendances show Farage is ranked 738th out of 751 MEPs for productivity.)

It’s these YouTube set-piece speeches, pumped via the site’s algorithm to the phones and laptops of an entirely new generation, that are Farage’s power base now. And, at the centre of this, is RT (formerly Russia Today), the Kremlin-controlled English-language broadcaster. RT made Farage a YouTube star.

Much of this story, like Arron Banks’s relationship with the Russian ambassador, is hidden and covert. But there’s also much that is out in the open, like Farage’s support of pro-Russian parties in the European parliament, and his association with RT.

Guillaume Chaslot, an ex-YouTuber who’s now an adviser for the Center for Humane Technology, explains RT’s all-conquering role in the YouTube ecosystem. “They’re the biggest information network on YouTube. They’ve 22 channels and they have an absolute masterful understanding of how the algorithm works. They make this incredibly effective clickbait content – disaster videos of the tsunami and so on, and they use it to suck in traffic. And when they have the eyeballs, they use their understanding of the algorithm to send people to political content that supports their foreign policy aims.”

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on the balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London.
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on the balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London. Photograph: Peter Nicholls/Reuters

RT recognised Farage’s value way back in 2011. An ex-Ukip insider tells me how RT’s London correspondent “practically lived inside Ukip’s offices. They targeted Gerard Batten first [the current leader of Ukip] and then Farage. They loved it. RT would ask them on every week. They’d talk about anything.” Batten did not respond to the Observer’s questions about his relationship with RT.

Farage is “phenomenally useful for the Russian government,” Ben Nimmo, a leading researcher into Russian online propaganda, tells me. “The thing about RT is that they are completely open about what it is. The editor-in-chief has described it as ‘information warfare’. She has said it’s as much a part of Russia’s arsenal as its ministry of defence.”

All this is out in the open, but the Observer has been shown emails that reveal something new. The person who used to upload Farage’s videos to YouTube was an EU parliament staffer called Kevin Ellul Bonici. According to a Guardian report last year, sources inside the European parliament said Ellul Bonici – who did not respond to the allegations – was “a frequent visitor to the Russian embassy”, after which he would return with “a bootload of propaganda”, and was subject to an internal investigation. The new emails seen by the Observer show that Bonici was uploading content not just to the official Ukip channel but also uploading it “on a private channel” for “the many fringe websites”.

There is no evidence that Farage knew about Ellul Bonici’s alleged relationship with the Russian embassy. When asked about all of the issues in this article, a spokesman for Farage said: “Mr Farage has no desire to speak to you under any circumstances.” The Observer could not reach Ellul Bonici for comment.

The Observer has also learned new details about a meeting between Nigel Farage and Roger Stone. Stone is the extraordinary peroxide-blond 66-year-old dandy, a self-styled “dirty trickster” who’s played a key role in many political scandals since Watergate, and who is central to Mueller’s Trump-Russia investigation. On 8 August 2016, Stone told a small crowd that he’d been in touch with Assange. There would be a WikiLeaks “October surprise”, he suggested, about “the Clinton foundation”. In later comments he correctly forecast both the source of the leak and the timing of it. It is this claim to have knowledge of WikiLeaks’ material – before WikiLeaks released it – that is believed to have piqued Mueller’s intense interest.

Mueller is looking at timings of all this. The timeline of who knew about WikiLeaks’ stash of emails from Democrat accounts, and when. Emails that we now know were hacked by the Russian government and that threw the presidential race into chaos just days before the US presidential election.

Stone and his associates have been questioned by Mueller many times. Some of those associates of Stone are Farage’s associates too: InfoWars journalist Jerome Corsi, Steve Bannon and the controversial academic Ted Malloch, once tipped by Farage to be Trump’s ambassador to the EU.

US political strategist and former Trump adviser Roger Stone, who had dinner with Farage in July 2016 at the Republican National Convention.
US political strategist and former Trump adviser Roger Stone, who had dinner with Farage in July 2016 at the Republican National Convention. Photograph: John Sciulli/Getty Images

Stone makes his own appearance in the timeline. One of the film-makers behind the brilliant 2017 documentary Get Me Roger Stone, Daniel DiMauro, spoke to me about a meeting that he witnessed between Stone, Alex Jones and Farage during the Republican National Convention, 18-21 July 2016.

“Stone had arranged to have dinner with Alex Jones and Nigel Farage,” he tells me. And they followed him with the camera crew. “But we got to the restaurant and Farage’s people were: ‘No, no, no! You can’t film. You can’t film.’ It was weird. Jones and Stone were totally open to it. But Farage was ‘No way’. He didn’t want any record of it. We didn’t know what to make of it.

Another member of the crew told me: “It was the first time that Alex Jones, Roger Stone and Nigel Farage met face to face. We’d had a wire on Roger everywhere we went but when we turned up to meet Farage and his guy, he [Farage’s aide] was absolutely adamant.

“What was so noticeable was how Alex Jones was so pumped up afterwards about the leaks that were coming. He was saying it openly on his show. And then days later, the DNC leaks dropped [on July 22] and blew apart the Democratic National Convention.”

Less than two weeks later, on August 4, 2016, Roger Stone would also go on Alex Jones’s radio show and trail a new release. There would be “proof” of a scandal involving “Clinton Foundation”, a new “devastating” leak. “I think Julian Assange has that proof,” he said.

In 2017, a spokesman for Farage told the American magazine Mother Jones: “Nigel met Roger Stone in a restaurant in Cleveland during the RNC purely by chance. They subsequently met each other in a hotel in Washington during Trump’s inauguration, again without planning and by chance.”

If you had to pick another extraordinary story about Nigel Farage’s associates, George Cottrell would have to feature. Aged just 22, he was appointed Farage’s aide and Ukip’s chief fundraiser during the Brexit campaign. The two were at Chicago’s O’Hare airport on 22 July, 2016 – the day after the Republican convention in Cleveland at which Farage met Jones and Stone.

Arron Banks – who was also there – describes what happened in his memoir, the Bad Boys of Brexit: “As they were alighting from the domestic flight, five FBI officers cuffed him [Cottrell]. They swooped the minute he set foot on the gangway and if Wiggy [Andy Wigmore] hadn’t been standing right behind him, nobody would have known what had happened. All the other passengers were held back. It was swift and discreet, and he was hauled off without explanation.”

Cottrell was subsequently charged with 21 offences, including money laundering, fraud, blackmail and extortion. He pleaded guilty to one of them and was released after eight months in jail. In an interview with the Telegraph, he explained how he’d learned about “the murky and complicated world of ‘shadow banking’” and had worked for “an offshore private bank” that was “under investigation by the US authorities as a foreign financial institution of primary money-laundering concern”. There is no suggestion in the charges that this was linked to Ukip. Cottrell did not respond to the Observer’s attempts to reach him.

Arron Banks with George Cottrell, the Farage aide arrested and jailed in the US.
Arron Banks with George Cottrell, the Farage aide arrested and jailed in the US. Photograph: Elliott Franks/i-Images

But the biggest questions are about why Farage’s team sent confidential legal documents about Cottrell’s arrest to the Russian embassy in London. In June, the Observer was shown confidential emails that revealed that Andy Wigmore emailed Cottrell’s legal documents including his federal indictment to his main contact at the embassy, the political secretary, Alexander Udod. (Udod was expelled from Britain in March this year after Sergei Skirpal’s poisoning.)

According to Banks’s emails, on 17 August 2016, Banks and Wigmore were inside the Russian embassy, visiting the ambassador Alexander Yakovenko. This was also the day that Bannon took over as Trump’s campaign manager. On 25 August, Farage, Banks and Wigmore travelled to a Trump rally in Mississippi where Farage joined Trump on stage. The crowd roared. Here was “Mr Brexit,” said Trump. The election, he said, would be “Brexit plus, plus, plus.”

The fourth time I call Nigel Farage’s LBC show is just a week ago. Late on Saturday night, the Observer published its latest revelations about Arron Banks and the Leave.EU campaign. An academic from Essex University, Emma Briant, had obtained emails from a Cambridge Analytica employee which revealed that Banks had sought Steve Bannon’s help in soliciting campaign donations from US funders. We have no idea if Banks went ahead and attempted to fundraise in the US. We know only that it would have been illegal for him if he had. Using foreign money in a British election campaign is against the law.

But we do know the US “alt-right” played a role. On the day that Theresa May triggered article 50, 29 March 2017, a journalist from Breitbart, the rightwing news website cofounded by Steve Bannon, caught Farage with a pint of beer, outside a pub, beaming. He lifts his glass to the camera. “Well done, Bannon. Well done, Breitbart. You helped with this hugely.”

In Britain, Farage is still the man with the pint. The Good Bloke. The kind of man you wouldn’t mind having a drink with. The plucky survivor of both testicular cancer and, on the day of the 2010 general election, a spectacular plane crash. And the press coverage of him – such as an interview with him in last week’s Sunday Times – still trades in Farage cliches. Partly because, as his former colleague Lance-Watkins tells me: “He is that man. He’s hail-fellow-well-met. He likes people and he has that natural bonhomie. He did so well on Question Time because it was a form that was perfectly made for him. But that’s just what’s going on, on the surface. It masks a profound insincerity.”

Farage meeting Alexander Yakovenko, the Russian ambassador, in 2013.
Farage meeting Alexander Yakovenko, the Russian ambassador, in 2013. Photograph: Russian Embassy

Farage sits at the intersection of the key forces in a new world order. An order that the old formats can’t cope with. What we need to ask is whether a man closely allied to people like Bannon and supportive of Viktor Orbán should be allowed to amplify his propaganda unchallenged on our broadcast media.

It’s the people who have studied the campaign most closely who are asking the most questions. Damian Collins, the Conservative MP leading parliament’s fake news and disinformation inquiry, has said that “the direct links between the political movements behind Brexit and Trump” urgently need investigating.

“We’ve got to recognise the bigger picture here,” he said recently. “This is being coordinated across national borders by very wealthy people in a way we haven’t really seen before.”

The committee has called repeatedly for a Mueller-style inquiry. The government continues to ignore it.

‘What’s your question for Nigel?” the LBC producer asks me when, last Sunday morning, I call in. This time I’m “Sarah from Weybridge”, a true-blue voter disgusted with Theresa May’s Brexit betrayal. “I’ll get you straight on,” says the producer. And he does.

Actually, I tell Farage, it’s Carole Cadwalladr from the Observer. “Oh go away,” he says. “Honestly, you are a ranting lunatic.”

It’s only later that I notice the date: 18 November. Exactly three years from when Arron Banks and Andy Wigmore launched Leave.EU’s campaign. From when they walked in the door of the Russian embassy and discussed gold and diamond deals. I’m not a ranting lunatic. I’m a journalist. Who’s been trying to ask questions for nearly two years.

Nigel Farage declined to answer any questions put to him about subjects raised in this article.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,
Greg_L-W.

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#Nigel_Farage & #Ukip Seem Ever More Embroilled In >DARK MONEY< & Criminal Accountability …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 29/06/2018

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#Nigel_Farage & #Ukip Seem Ever More Embroilled In >DARK MONEY< & Criminal Accountability …
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Hi,

Mueller Probe Is Now Eyeing Pro-Brexit UKIP Member Nigel Farage

Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team are investigating a pro-Brexit businessman and his associate who have ties to Russian diplomats and Trump campaign operatives.

The Washington Post is reporting that Nigel Farage, a leader of the UK Independence Party and a prominent figure in the Brexit debate, is being investigated for his ties to Trump associates and Russian colluders.

Farage’s associate, Arron Banks, donated millions of dollars to a campaign for Britain to leave the European Union.

 

Banks has since provided dozens of emails and text messages from 2016 showing a connection between Farage and Russian ambassador to London, Alexander Yakovenko.

The Post reveals that Banks, Farage, and a handful of other Brexiteers have been attempting to work more closely with Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.

If Mueller and his team expose Farage, Banks, and others involved in Brexit, it could shine further light on the global implications of Russia meddling in elections and important social issues around the world.

There is already mounting evidence that Banks and his associates have worked to infiltrate American politics. Following the Brexit vote, Banks met with Yakovenko before heading to a fundraiser in Mississippi, an event he was invited to by former Trump Campaign Executive Steve Bannon.

The Independent reports that during the Mississippi fundraiser, both Farage and Banks had the opportunity to “huddle privately” with Republican nominee Trump.

“As both relationships [Trump and Yevenko] deepened, Mr. Banks and his associates discussed Mr. Trump’s bid and the US presidential campaign with Mr. Yakovenko. At least two of the meetings between Mr. Banks and the ambassador came shortly before or after meetings with Mr. Trump,” the Independent adds.

So far, Banks and Farage claim Robert Mueller’s team have not reached out. Trump lawyer, Rudy Giuliani also says he has also not been notified of any involvement from Yakovenko.

NBC News reports that investigators in the UK are now starting to show an interest between Brexit campaigners and the Trump campaign.

In the meantime, Banks has adopted Donald Trump’s “witch hunt” mantra, claiming that he wasn’t a back-channel infiltrator between the United States and Russia. Instead, Banks says he was only engaged in “routine business and diplomatic exchanges.”

Former Trump communications official Michael Caputo has admitted to being asked about Farage during an interview with Robert Mueller’s Special Counsel in early 2018.

In the meantime, Nigel Farage continues to huddle closely with Donald Trump. The photo shared at the top of this story was taken as Farage spoke at the 2018 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

DARK MONEY 01

To read a great deal more about >DARK MONEY< and the apparent involvement in these crimes of Nigel Farage, Arron Banks, Ukip, Andy Wigmore, George Cottrell and others Search this web site.

FARAGE &amp; COTTRELL 01

Then for even more CLICK HERE

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Carole Cadwalladr’s TWITTER Feed Exposes Arron Banks, Nigel Farage & the Dealings of Others With Russia For Profit, Gain or Greed …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 11/06/2018

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Carole Cadwalladr’s TWITTER Feed Exposes Arron Banks, Nigel Farage & the Dealings of Others With Russia For Profit, Gain or Greed …
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Hi,

New story up on what’s happening in Britain…but this has big implications for Trump-Russia investigation too. This was ‘s campaign. Friend of Bannon. Ally of Trump. Whose funder we now learn had covert links to Russia..

And – look! – more interesting chronology….

This is the crux of it. Ambassador Yakovenko oversaw the presentation of a multi-billion $ gold deal. And we know that 12 days after referendum, the deal took place. Sound familiar? Same tactics as the Rosneft deal…with Carter Page played here by

This story as as significant to Trump-Russia as it is to Brexit. And key figure is – the Russian ambassador to London who’s named in Mueller indictment of George Papodopoulos. He’s the one who issued invites. He’s the one who oversaw the offer of a $$$ gold deal…

Dear America, you need to get to grips with story dominating UK press. Today, we reveal how Russian ambassador groomed the funders of Brexit campaign with offer of sweetheart deal. That’s the Brexit campaign led by Bannon friend & Trump ally

My column on the story h/t to ⁦

“At first she accused The Observer of hacking her archive and stealing the email… but by late afternoon on Saturday she had entered into a discussion about cooperating with The Guardian/The Observer if they agreed to hold the story until Monday.”

Carole Cadwalladr Retweeted David Carroll

🦅

I did. I would LOVE for MEPs to question . Because he won’t answer mine. visiting is one small part of the story. The bigger play is Britain’s central role in the Trump-Russia nexus. And, how, slap bang, in the middle of it all..is Farage

Carole Cadwalladr added,

Arron Banks and Russia: Time for proper investigation -Tomorrow’s Guardian

Carole Cadwalladr Retweeted Peter Jukes

Yoo-hoo, ! Have you had time to check your ‘diary and office computer’ yet? You’ve now had 53 hours to get back to us…

Carole Cadwalladr added,

Peter Jukes Retweeted Arron Banks

Arron knows this isn’t what happened with our story. But in typical Putin/Trump misinformation mode, he tries to change the subject.

Peter Jukes added,

…by which I mean, I could really have used some learned advice on how to handle a problem like . Still, good news is that he lied to us & shown bad faith so at is going to find it much harder to write those defamation letters now..

My god. They will have to teach this one at journalism schools in years to come. What a toxic, twisted mess. So, everything given to came directly from ?!? What. The. Actual. Fuck?

PLOT TWIST! I now hear that it was who gave the story!!! I emailed him at 11.58am on Friday carefully detailing all the allegations, per good journalistic practice. He claimed he hadn’t seen the email & needed more time. Meanwhile…

not ‘Times investigation’. Oakeshott went to S Times with her email stash when foundout (b/c invitations sent to key figures to respond to allegations – standard legal practice) that were due to report emails story in Observer (seen via another source)

Sarah Donaldson Retweeted Brexitshambles #FBPE #Unsafe

Great clips thread if you are interested in ’s Alexander Nix appearance last week but haven’t time to watch the full three and a half hours…

Sarah Donaldson added,

All of the above quote is a download from Carole Cadwalladr’s TWITTER Feed 0210hrs Monday 11-Jun-2018. I have altered the colour of comments regarding Nigel Farage to RED.
This I assure you is just the tip of the iceberg, which I have refrained from giving details of, nor have I shown where much of the money seems to have gone and apparent properties purchased for 2 main reasons:
Firstly I have waited for the media with its backup of lawyers to indemnify my publication of facts.
Secondly as I did not wish to fall fould of the laws pertaining to reportage of ongoing Court Cases as I felt there was a risk of prejudicing a Court case.
I understand Carole Cadwalladr has witheld publication of the eMails etc for many months on similar grounds, seemingly publishing the material as Isabel Oakeshott was publishing to seemingly seek to cover her apparent collusion with Banks, Farage & Wigmore and doubtless others in betrayal of Britain and the principles of democracy aided indirectly and possibly directly with the Russian authorities and intelligence services.
There is clearly a great deal more to come – however much of the time the Meeja is obsessed with gossip, Slebs and the simple story with peurile soap opera style pandering to the lowest public interest in a rush to the gutter.
Keep checking back for more revalations and archived material on my various sites see:

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Greg_L-W.

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#Arron_Banks Announces #Ukip Is Broke & Leavers Should Join The Tories …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 27/01/2018

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#Arron_Banks Announces #Ukip Is Broke & Leavers Should Join The Tories …
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Hi,

Banks Says Join Tories – COS UKIP’S BUST

Saturday, 27 January 2018 by: Tim Fenton

The rumours concerning UKIP’s financial stability, or rather the lack of it, have been circulating for some time, not helped by the party’s former Oberscheissenführer Nigel “Thirsty” Farage and several of his fellow MEPs having their salaries either docked or stopped outright following European Parliament investigations into the legitimacy of some of their expense claims. Put directly, the Kippers are on their uppers.
That is why current comedy leader Henry Bolton is so confident he can weather the little local difficulty caused him by an almost unanimous vote of no confidence in his leadership, following the revelation that his publicity stunt girlfriend Jo Marney had racist sympathies. Bolton has calculated that UKIP is so skint, the party cannot afford to mount another leadership ballot – not unless it sacks at least one member of staff.
This was bad enough, but all might have settled down for a few days, had not comedy UKIP backer Arron Banks, another whose supposed wealth may not be quite as grand as  he would like everyone to believe, decided to have an “Oh What A Giveaway” moment and let the cat out of the bag in no style at all, confirming the money had run out.
Using his piss-poor propaganda site Westmonster, Banks has let it be known that “We could have [a] clear majority for real Brexit in [the] Tory Party if UKIP supporters join”. Wait, what? “Arron Banks has given his vision for the Brexit fight moving forward, insisting that UKIP is no longer the vehicle as it is ‘melting away before our eyes’ but that Brexiteers could force through change by joining the Conservative Party to push through the will of the people”. What was that, “Brexit moving forward”? Oh, just f*** right off.
But there’s more. “Banks said: ‘It is said that the Tory Party, once millions strong, now couldn’t fill Old Trafford – and I mean the cricket ground!’” The Tory Party has never even been one million (singular) strong, but then Arron Banks and reality, eh?
What say Banksy to that? “In that case why don’t the Brexit forces, the insurgents, do a Momentum and all join the Tory party? With just 30,000 members the Corbynite Momentum now dominates popular discourse on the left of British politics”. Momentum has a total supporter base of over 200,000. And UKIP … doesn’t.
Never mind, he has even more rubbish to spin. “I reckon we could have a clear majority in the Tory party for a real Brexit within months if UKIP wound up and all its members and FORMER members, all of its latent support in the country now joined up to the Conservative Party … Maybe by flooding back into the Conservative party we can change the course of history again. With a leadership challenge on the cards once more, this may be the perfect time”. Flooding my arse. There wouldn’t even be a trickle.
But what Arron Banks has inadvertently revealed is that the dark money has been turned off, the European Parliament money likewise, UKIP is on its uppers, Brexit is slipping from view, and he’s even more out of ideas than usual.
UKIP may be wound up within weeks. The party is fortunate not to have ended already. It’s a joke, so is Banks, their backers have run off, and he’s got nowhere to run.
The shelf life of UKIP and Arron Banks was for a time, but not for all time. Good thing too.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

For more detailed facts regarding DARK MONEY CLICK HERE & HERE then scan down!

For details & facts regarding Arron Banks CLICK HERE

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Greg_L-W.

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Interview of #Glenn_Simpson By The US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee & MORE! …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 18/01/2018

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Interview of #Glenn_Simpson By The US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee & MORE! …
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Hi,

every turn one takes in studying America’s politics at the moment seems to lead to either ever more evidence of direct or indirect involvement between Trump, his family & leadership members and the various sources of Russian money & influence!

You will find the sequence of facts & Tweets below of interest and provenance of my comments.

It is notable from a British perspective just how inexorably it seems that the net is clossing on Nigel Farage & several of his associates for their part in corrupting the American election on behalf of Russia – when the trap snaps shut it does seem that Farage will have no ability to escape justice, clearly he will find his ‘Teflon’ immunity which he seems to enjoy in Britain and the EU where it seems the responsible authorities have repeatedly colluded with him and failed to bring him to book for his serial frauds and criminal behaviour.

They may well be asking about such things as Chemin du Sabias, St. Tropez:

 

Byline (@Byline_Media)
BREAKING: in sworn testimony Simpson alleges that @Nigel_Farage was a key player in the #TrumpRussia scandal and could have been the key go-between for @wikileaks pic.twitter.com/bHqEkO168J

Pinned Tweet

You thought the phone hacking scandal was over? Think again. New trial on Thursday opens up issue of hacking at the Sun, blagging confidential information, and ‘concealment and destruction’ of evidence by Murdoch’s News UK

Presumably “Air Bank” should be Arron Banks? Strange they didn’t look that up or correct it.

Controversial data firm CA/SCL supporting Russian interests alongside Trump in Qatar crisis. Me via

Documents show Mercer/Bannon Cambridge Analytica supporting Russian interests alongside Trump in Qatar row.

1h1 hour ago

David Carroll

🦅 Retweeted Byline

Well here’s an intriguing mention of Cambridge Analytica in the HPSCI Simpson/FusionGPS transcript

David Carroll

🦅 added,

Who was trying to shut down the question? Nunes? Gowdy?

Replying to

Would really like to know WHO was the person that said “Time is up” at such a critical part of ’s questioning of Simpson!

23/ Here’s a brief explanation, from Simpson, of why Trump doing business with *Russian mafia*, as opposed to other nation’s mafias, suggested the possibility, to Fusion, that Trump could have illicit ties to the Russian government (note: Fusion was being paid by conservatives):

21/ Holy cow! Simpson: “We had a [Russian] gangster [nick-]named Taiwanchik living in Trump Tower running a high-stakes gambling ring out of Trump Tower—while he himself was a fugitive for having rigged the skating competition at the Salt Lake Olympics and other sporting events.”

Peter Jukes Retweeted Byline

Er …. Any comment on this?

Peter Jukes added,

What an odd coincidence that the person engaged in such subterfuge with foreign powers has the same name as the fine British patriot.

Comment [A26]: Unclear, unfunny, delete Retweeted Byline

No! You don’t say! Well, I never etc, etc.

Comment [A26]: Unclear, unfunny, delete added,

Leo Garcia Retweeted Byline

Hola Nigel. Hola CA. Hola Wikileaks. Hola Putin.

Leo Garcia added,

Fusion GPS founder: I heard Brexit leader Farage gave data to Assange

Glenn Simpson to House Intel Committee: Nigel Farage allegedly gave Julian Assange a thumb drive containing data and visited him more often than is widely known

Worth noting that Simpson from GPS Fusion thinks that Ted Malloch is lynchpin in the and saga

BREAKING: in sworn testimony Simpson alleges that was a key player in the scandal and could have been the key go-between for

Lord Bikebot Retweeted Byline

Widely suspected for months, lets see where this goes…

Lord Bikebot added,

3h3 hours ago

David Carroll

🦅 Retweeted Wendy Siegelman

Russia’s NRA infiltration thru Torshin & Butina further corroborated in Simpson (FusionGPS) testimony released by House Intel Committee today. And of course there’s a mysterious Cambridge Analytica connection.

David Carroll

🦅 added,

9h9 hours ago

Alt_SeanSpicer’sMic

🎙🤦🏻‍♀️

🎙 Retweeted Justin Miller

This is actually SUPER important…the sending a delegation to meet with a “sanctioned” arms manufacturer. BIGLY YUGE deal👇🏻🚨👇🏻

Alt_SeanSpicer’sMic

🎙🤦🏻‍♀️

🎙 added,

Important insight from Simpson’s astonishing testimony about how Russian organised crime has moved into financial markets and media

There is nothing in international law about having to stay in first safe country. Also, vast majority of refugees are actually in the countries neighbouring their country of origin. How about shelving the bigotry for once and getting your facts straight?

Glenn Simpson testimony link still down. Here is a Scribd version as well.

Here’s an Archive version. Thanks to

Russian government infiltrated Jewish and Christian Orthodox churches for ‘intelligence’ purposes: Fusion GPS founder

The Russia-NRA connection is one of the most fascinating dangling threads from 2016. Keep tugging.

Fusion GPS founder claims that the President’s personal lawyer has a conviction for “a money-laundering related crime.”

Replying to

Connect the dots..

Russia helped organize financial and information support for the Trump campaign for President. Torshin(Head of Russia’s Central bank) and Butina worked with the NRA to funnel money to Trump and Republican candidates.

Simpson: “…it appears the Russians, you know, infiltrated the NRA…” (Page 142)

SHOT: A Russian gangster ran a high-stakes gambling ring out of Trump Tower, per Fusion GPS cofounder Glenn Simpson. CHASER: Trump was with that Russian gangster in the VIP section at the 2013 Miss Universe pageant (along with other “Kremlin biggies”).

Fusion GPS asked about Russia links to NRA – “It appears the Russians, you know, infiltrated the NRA”

Per the newest Fusion transcript, the mobster running the gambling ring out of Trump Tower was with Trump at the 2013 Miss Universe pageant.

This seems like more information on Sergei Millian than was previously in the public domain. Fusion had clear evidence that he did in fact interact with Michael Cohen, contrary to Cohen’s adamant denial.

Fusion GPS: Kremlin ‘Purged’ Suspected Spiess After Trump Dossier Release via

BREAKING: Fusion GPS’ Glenn Simpson told House Intel Committee “I think we saw patterns of buying and selling [by Donald Trump] that we thought were suggestive of money laundering.”

Fusion GPS cofounder Glenn Simpson says they spent “a lot of time investigating [Alexander Torshin]” — described as a “Russian banker/Duma member/Mafia leader” & “life member of the NRA” who is “well known for $ laundering.” Also mentions Trump’s plans to meet w/him last Feb.

(THREAD) BREAKING: The second Glenn Simpson (Fusion GPS) transcript—this one from House, rather than Senate, testimony—has just been released. In this thread, I’ll note any major news, statements, or developments the new transcript reveals. Hope you’ll read and share.

.

.

Regards,
Greg_L-W.

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Partner of #Ukip leader suspended by party over racist comments about Meghan Markle …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 13/01/2018

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Partner of #Ukip leader suspended by party over racist comments about Meghan Markle …
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Hi,

as Ukip is left with little option but to seek its 5th leader in 18 months Henry Bolton’s odious Partner is suspended by the party over racist comments about Meghan Markle …

I guess no one should be too surprised by an extensively racist political party has a leader who thinks with the wrong part of his body, like his predecessor, and has a mistress from amongst the party ranks who is overtly racist with a questionable track record!

I guess Farage and his son can’t be too pleased this odious drug store blond has been so publicly exposed, but it does seem public exposure is very much her style / occupation to judge by the many near naked pictures & trophy ‘chums’ she has posted pictures of on the internet!

MARNEY, Jo 06 + FARAGE jnr 01

MARNEY, Jo 02

Xavier Hollander would no doubt have been pleased with such a portfolio!

Partner of UKIP leader suspended by party over racist comments about Meghan Markle

The girlfriend of Henry Bolton, the leader of UKIP, has been suspended from the party after she made deeply offensive and racist comments about royal bride-to-be Meghan Markle.

According to the Mail on Sunday, 25-year-old Jo Marney claimed that Meghan would ‘taint’ The Royal Family with ‘her seed’ and pave the way for a ‘black King’.

In messages to a friend, Miss Marney describes Meghan as ‘a scrubber’ and a ‘gender equality t***’ who is a ‘dumb little commoner… obsessed with race.’

In the conversation, she also says ‘next will be a Muslim PM. And a black king,’ adding ‘this is Britain, not Africa.’

Following The Mail’s report, Miss Marney released a statement, saying: “I apologise unreservedly for the shocking language I used. The opinions I expressed were deliberately exaggerated in order to make a point and have, to an extent, been taken out of context. Yet I fully recognise the offence they have caused.

“No offence was intended and, again, I apologise unreservedly for any such offence or hurt that my messages have caused to members of the public, members of Ukip my friends, family and loved ones.

“I have disappointed them all and let myself down. I cannot sufficiently express my regret and sadness at having done so.”

UKIP chairman Paul Oakden said: “In light of messages that have been brought to my attention, I have taken the decision to immediately suspend her party membership pending an investigation. Ukip does not, has not and never will condone racism.”

It emerged a couple of weeks ago that UKIP Leader, Henry Bolton, was in a relationship with Miss Marney, who is a model.

He is now facing calls to resign, with the party’s National Executive Committee meeting on Thursday to decide his future.

If Mr Bolton resigned or is sacked by UKIP, the party will elect its fifth leader in 18 months.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

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Greg_L-W.

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The Farcical Claims Of Being Skint By #Farage Have Moved some £35K Closer To The Truth Under The #EU’s Repayment Demands! …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 13/01/2018

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The Farcical Claims Of Being Skint By #Farage Have Moved some £35K Closer To The Truth Under The #EU’s Repayment Demands! …
 .
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Posted by:
Greg Lance – Watkins
Greg_L-W

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Hi,

minded of the source of this article, about which we have been aware for some time and the subject of which we were first alluding to way before Christmas, it becomes increasingly obvious, it would seem, that Nigel Farage and his chums have no further use to the Russians.

You may recall we wrote of our understanding of the source of much of the money that funded several houses for Farage on the continent, including just outside St. Tropez, one in Tuscany and others.

You will also recall Farage, Banks, Wigmore & Raheem Kasam were scheduled to attend Trump’s inaguration and despite the low turnout for the inaguration they suddenly found their invitations had been withdrawn and they were left to have a rather sad visit sheltering by a vendors stall outside of the perimitter looking in, followed by a party with a few nebishes and nobodies and hotel staff in the resplendent Washington hotel ballroom they had hired – kind of much ado about nothing.

Then remember we announced we had been reliably informed Farage had been interviewed on or about 19th. December by Mueller regarding the two visits by private plane to Russia that he had made, which foolishly I believe he denied under the misconception there would be no record of his visits as they were by private plane, when experienced travellers would have realised flight plans & passenger manifests pertain even to private jets!

Then of course there was the plea bargain by George Cottrell (If you need to play catchup try CLICK HERE and also follow the links!), I’m given to understand from sources that have proved reliable in the past, this led to details of around 20 wire frauds and at least another 50 cases of money laundering.

You may remember the widely reported fact that #Farage & Banks were classified as individuals of interest some time ago by the FBI and US NSA.

Then of course there were the regular contacts with Julian Assange and release of records obtained by Farage that were believed to have been acquired by Russia and supplied via Assange to Farage for Trump – The Hillary leaks!

For someone who has worked for the Russians for a number of years to be so clearly ‘thrown to the wolves’, as Farage would seem to have been, is an interesting reflection on loyalty amongst scoundrels – obviously Farage & Fuller’s mutual abuse and exploitation is yet another!

Russian media now seems to display very little sympathy for their once enthusiastic runners! I gather they don’t much care about his various mistresses or his wife and other parasites in the party who are having to repay their ill gotten gains also!

Clearly money is a very large part of the motivation of the likes of these types of individual and loyalty is just a commodity to be bought and sold as clearly so is sex for many of them!

Nigel Farage has MEP salary docked to £35k amid claims of EU funds misuse

Nigel Farage has MEP salary docked to £35k amid claims of EU funds misuse
Former UKIP leader Nigel Farage will have his MEP’s salary slashed by 50 percent to £35,000 (US$48,000) after a European Parliament investigation found he had misused EU funds.

Farage, who has recently described himself as “skint,” was being investigated by the European Parliament after allegations were made last February that he, as well as seven other UKIP MEPs, used European funds to finance his party office.

The investigation found that Christopher Adams, besides being Farage’s personal parliamentary assistant, was also carrying out work for the Euroskeptic party as its national nominating officer.

Under current EU rules, full-time assistants to MEPs are not allowed to do paid work for national parties, while part-time assistants must have their second jobs, even voluntary ones, vetted by the European Parliament watchdog to prevent conflicts of interest.

Amid concerns over his “key role” in UKIP, auditors suspended Adams’ contract.

As Farage has reportedly failed to provide proof of Adams’ work as parliamentary assistant, the EU is now docking the Brexiteer’s pre-tax monthly pay of €8,484 (US$10,328) per month in a bid to recoup the lost funds. He will have paid back his “debt” by October 2018.

“Since 1 January [2018] the European parliament has withheld 50 percent in order to recoup the €40,000 (US$48,692) due in salary that was paid to Christopher Adams and which cannot be proved by Farage,” a parliamentary source told the Guardian.

A spokeswoman for the European Parliament said she could not officially confirm details regarding Farage’s salary.

But, if MEPs fail to “provide any justification or proof” that their funded assistants are only carrying out EU-related duties, “then the administration may recover the money by withholding part of the MEP’s salary.”

A spokesman for the Eeuroskeptic Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy Group (EFDD) told the Independent: “There is a vindictive campaign by the European Parliament of selective persecution of Euroskeptic MEPs, parties and groups. This allegation is all part of their politically-motivated assault.”  

Farage, who spearheaded the Brexit campaign, recently made headlines by claiming he has every right to his EU salary.

Denying claims of hypocrisy given his persistent pro-Brexit rhetoric, he said: “Why should my family suffer?”

“I have just voted to get rid of my job. I was the turkey that voted for Christmas. How is that hypocrisy?” he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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Putting #Farage, #Trump, #Russia, #Banks & #Cottrell In Some Perspective …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 29/12/2017

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Putting #Farage, #Trump, #Russia, #Banks & #Cottrell In Some Perspective …
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Hi,

Known as “Posh George” by Farage and his entourage, Cottrell is the nephew of Lord Hesketh, a former Conservative party treasurer who later defected to the more radical right-wing UKIP. His mother, Fiona Cottrell, was reportedly a former girlfriend of Prince Charles.

After Cottrell was released from federal prison in the U.S., former UKIP candidate and party supporter William Cash wrote a sympathetic profile for The Daily Telegraph. As part of a detailed interview, it offered an account of how Cottrell got mixed up in dark web fraud that was radically different from the sworn testimony he gave in court. The article claimed he was approached at his bank by two American businessmen who wanted to sell their property portfolio. His guilty plea, by contrast, admitted that he had offered illicit money laundering services on a TOR site.

While the interview seemed keen to paint a more understanding picture of Cottrell—a young man who got into trouble after struggling with gambling—it does also fill in some of the questions around why Cottrell would prove useful to Farage. It was apparently not just his family connections that secured his job; he was said to have “learned about the murky and complicated world of `shadow banking,’, secret offshore accounts and sophisticated financial structures” while he worked at a private bank.

“It was these skills that landed Cottrell an unpaid role” at UKIP according to Cash, who explained that Cottrell went on to work “for an offshore private bank (which was under investigation by the U.S. authorities as a `foreign financial institution of primary money-laundering concern’).”

A LinkedIn page in Cottrell’s name is careful not to name all of the banks he has worked for. Instead it talks about working for a private bank as a “Client Manager within cross-border private banking division, responsible for onboarding HNWI individuals,” or as an “advisor to the Investment Manager of a Cayman administered fund of funds.”

The LinkedIn account is less secretive about his “interests.” The 41 organizations listed on the profile include Cottrell’s old school and some of the global financial powerhouses you would expect to see on the account of any financier, but there are also some more unusual connections.

Cottrell is listed as one of just 71 followers of Moldinconbank, a controversial Moldovan bank that was alleged to be at the very center of the “Russian Laundromat” scam that laundered billions in illicit funds from Moscow through fraud, rigged state contracts and tax evasion. Some of those laundered state funds reportedly went to pay foreigners who were acting on behalf of the Kremlin, such as the leader of a small Polish political party who was later arrested on charges of spying for Russia.

The Daily Beast asked the bank whether Cottrell had ever worked with them, but the HR department would only say: “According to the legislation in force, personal data is granted only with the agreement of the employee.”

Another of the Cottrell account’s “interests” is the bank FBME, an entity which was officially based in Tanzania but had foreign offices in two countries: Cyprus and Russia. According to a U.S. investigation the bank was linked to Bashar al Assad and al Qaeda as well as a $230m fraud against the Russian people uncovered by Sergei Magnitsky, which led to a series of anti-corruption laws being introduced around the world in his name. In 2014, the bank was banned from accessing the American market by the U.S. Treasury after money laundering allegations.

The bank was favored by cronies of Vladimir Putin, some of who used accounts to launder Russian money, as well as the oligarch Mikhail Prokhorov, the owner of the Brooklyn Nets NBA team.

The Cottrell account also listed the Russian banks VTB and Alfa Bank, which the FBI is investigating for links to the Trump organization, as well as Banca Privada d’Andorra (BPA)—which was described as a “primary money laundering concern” linked to Russian crime networks by the U.S. Treasury. BPA did not respond to queries about working with Cottrell.

The Daily Beast cannot independently verify that this LinkedIn page was written by Cottrell but a UKIP spokesman confirmed that the entry about his role in the party was accurate. The LinkedIn account is also linked—from and to—a Twitter account in Cottrell’s name, which has 140 followers. Those followers include a host of UKIP or Brexit campaign insiders including Joe Jenkins, Jack Montgomery, Michael Heaver, Jack Duffin, Andy Wigmore and Nigel Farage as well as Farage’s head of press Dan Jukes and UKIP comms chief Gawain Towler. Towler tagged the account after a night out with Cottrell and his old UKIP buddies “making up” in East London after his deportation from the U.S. earlier this year. A UKIP spokesman said he believed that the account was genuine.

Another follower of the @GeorgeSCottrell account is Ben Harris-Quinney, chairman of the Bow Group—Britain’s oldest conservative think tank.

He told The Daily Beast he had only met Cottrell a handful of times but he described a man who made a big impression in a world where most senior party apparatchiks are a fairly uninspiring. “He’s quite a larger than life, engaging character. I got the impression that he was a bit of a swashbuckler—keen on adventure,” he said.

Harris-Quinney caught up with him in the pub after his release. “People were very surprised when he was arrested because it was so bizarre,” he said. “But he seemed in good spirits and appeared to have taken the whole thing in his stride.”

Indeed, as Cottrell told The Telegraph: “Despite my unfortunate adventure, and everything I went through, I still maintain 2016 was the best year of my life… Brexit and Trump. Nothing better.”

Also on his small list of followers is the journalist Isabel Oakeshott who was with Cottrell and Farage when the young aide was arrested by U.S. agents in Chicago.

At the time, she was writing the book Bad Boys of Brexit, nominally authored by Arron Banks, which names Cottrell as one of just four UKIP staffers in the book’s “cast of characters.”

Banks was by far the biggest financial backer of Brexit—first donating to UKIP and then donating and lending millions to Leave.EU, and another Brexit campaign group. Last month, it was announced that Britain’s Electoral Commission was launching an investigation into whether or not Banks was the “true source” of that money.

Two weeks earlier Open Democracy UK published an investigation into Banks’ finances—raising questions over his wealth and claiming he had been in some financial difficulty before finding almost £10 million to put towards securing Britain’s exit from the European Union. “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?” the report asked.

Banks—who was a member of Farage’s small Brexit inner circle, along with Cottrell—is a colorful character who seems to enjoy fanning the rumors that surround him including suggestions that he has been working on behalf of the Russians.

The week before Christmas this year, Banks and Andy Wigmore, a colleague from Leave.EU, sent a journalist a bottle of Stolichnaya vodka with the message “From Russia With Love.”

In his account of the battle to secure Brexit, he delights in bringing up the spy scandal his Russian wife was caught up in in 2010. Ekaterina Paderina, the daughter of a senior Russian official, who speaks six languages, used an email address with 007 in it and drives the Banks’ family Range Rover with the number plate X MI5 SPY. Banks, who runs a private intelligence company, even details in his book a six-hour lunch at the Russian embassy with Farage, his wife and the Russian ambassador.

In his book, he describes Cottrell as “posh to the point of caricature and willfully abrasive,” as well as detailing the fact that it was Cottrell who accompanied Farage as he made his way from meeting to meeting at the RNC.

Banks also describes the moment Cottrell was apprehended at the airport in Chicago in July 2016:

“Five FBI officers cuffed him. They swooped the minute he set foot on the gangway… It was swift and discreet, and he was hauled off without explanation. Nigel was stunned… [Cottrell] was wealthy enough to give his time for nothing, and had proven hard-working and loyal. There was nothing to suggest any criminal connection.”

Two days later, Farage and Banks found out why Cottrell had been led away: “Nasty shock today as Nigel got Posh George’s full rap sheet. It’s not pretty.”

What looked like a maximum of 20 years in jail was ultimately reduced to eight months when Cottrell agreed to plead guilty on December 19, 2016.

After his release there were reports that the former UKIP staffer had been given a short sentence because he passed evidence to the U.S. authorities. It is true that court documents filed by the prosecutors asked the judge to offer a reduced sentence because he cooperated and was willing to “provide federal agents additional information after his arrest.”

 

George Cottrell Mugshot

Officials in the U.S., however, downplayed suggestions that Cottrell had flipped and given key information that might implicate any of his political colleagues as the FBI hunts for a dark money trail connecting Russia, Brexit and the Trump campaign. They said Cottrell would not have been given the lighter sentence and allowed to leave the U.S. if prosecutors were relying on him to give evidence in court.

In the Telegraph interview by a friendly UKIP activist, Cottrell claims that he was lured into the trap while offering to help a customer of his bank. That is entirely inconsistent with the guilty plea he entered in a federal courtroom in Arizona.

His signed declaration said he was snared by undercover IRS-CI agents after proactively offering to help criminals move large sums of money around the world without detection.

“I worked with another individual known as ‘Banker’ to advertise money laundering services on a TOR network black-market website,” he wrote. “I explained various ways criminal proceeds could be laundered—for example, methods to transfer large amounts of cash out of the United States without triggering reporting requirements.”

After his dark web ad attracted the attention of the authorities in March 2014—before he worked for UKIP—Cottrell corresponded with undercover operatives who were posing as drug dealers via the encrypted messaging service Cryptocat before agreeing to travel to Las Vegas to tie up the phony deal.

The federal court heard that Cottrell was extremely well-versed in the intricacies of moving money around. “Cotrel [sic] was surprisingly young—approximately twenty years old at the time—but the IRS-CI agents were impressed with his knowledge of finance, U.S. government procedures, and anti-money laundering laws.”

The question remains, how much of that knowledge was he employing as UKIP’s chief Brexit fundraiser?

To view the original article CLICK HERE

See also CLICK HERE

Also HERE

And HERE

And HERE

& HERE

Also HERE

Hunt around & you will find we have more facts published!

You’ll also find this interesting CLICK HERE

For yet more interesting articles, many in a similar revealing vein CLICK HERE
well I guess that is around 5 > 8,000 articles before you start following all the other links 😉

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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The #EFDD #Farage & the #Russian_embassy and a smear campaign against a Kremlin critic …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 18/12/2017

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The #EFDD #Farage & the #Russian_embassy
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Posted by:
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Hi,

The Farage staffer, the Russian embassy and a smear campaign against a Kremlin critic

Worker for Farage’s group in EU parliament was ‘frequent visitor to embassy’ and accused of role in propaganda stunt

Nigel Farage in the European parliament.
Nigel Farage is part of the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group (EFDD) in the European parliament. Photograph: Jean-Francois Badias/AP

A senior member of Nigel Farage’s parliamentary group staff in Brussels was known for making trips to the Russian embassy in Belgium and was accused of orchestrating a smear campaign against a critic of the Kremlin, the Guardian has been told.

Two former staffers who worked for Farage’s Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group (EFDD) and who spoke to the Guardian on condition of anonymity said a senior member of the group’s staff, a native of Malta named Kevin Ellul Bonici, was known to have a relationship with the Russian embassy.

Ellul Bonici was part of a small team who worked in the administration of the secretariat office at the EFDD until at least 2015. The EFDD would not answer questions about his current status. Several sources said Ellul Bonici was close at that time to Farage, who relied on the core secretariat staff to help manage the EFDD, a rightwing Eurosceptic group that is still led by the former Ukip chief and comprises 45 MEPs.

According to the accounts of two former parliamentary staffers, in June 2015 a top aide to Farage named Michael McManus, who works for the EFDD, claimed to them that Ellul Bonici was a frequent visitor to the Russian embassy and had a relationship with officials there.

“I was told in June 2015 that this gentleman had a relationship with the Russian embassy in Brussels and that every time he came back from the Russian embassy he would return with a bootload of propaganda,” one former staffer told the Guardian.

The remarks were confirmed by another former staffer who also allegedly heard them from McManus.

Ellul Bonici did not respond to questions from the Guardian.

McManus did not respond to requests for comment by phone, text and email.

Ellul Bonici speaks fluent Russian and was educated in the former Soviet Union in the early 1980s, according to a biographical essay he published about his experience.

“Kevin was part of the secretariat, one of Farage’s senior staff members, and he has always kept them very close,” said Gary Cartwright, a journalist who covers the EU parliament and who previously worked in Farage’s parliamentary group.

The new allegation comes as some British MPs have started to raise questions about whether Russia may have sought to influence the Brexit vote.

Theresa May, the British prime minister, has accused Russia of meddling in elections as part of its drive to sow discord in the west.

Farage, a leading force behind the vote to leave the EU, has ridiculed the suggestion. He has also denied taking money from the Kremlin. There is no evidence that Ellul Bonici was ever involved in Farage’s pro-Brexit campaign.

Unlike most conservatives in the UK, who have traditionally taken a tough stance on Russia, the former Ukip chief has been a consistent cheerleader in support of Vladimir Putin, whom he once described as the leader he most admired.

Farage also has a relationship with Dana Rohrabacher, a US congressman from California who, according to a recent report in the New York Times, was seen as such a valuable source of intelligence to the Kremlin that he was given a codename.

Farage’s proximity to pro-Kremlin actors was first made apparent in late 2014, after alleged actions by Ellul Bonici became the source of a complaint.

In December that year, the Maltese staffer walked into the European parliament and distributed hundreds of books to members’ pigeonholes without authorisation, according to the results of an internal investigation that was later conducted by the parliament’s security service.

The book was called Red Dalia, a highly critical biography of Dalia Grybauskaitė, the president of Lithuania and Putin critic, who weeks earlier had referred to Russia as a “terrorist state”.

The EU parliament investigated the incident after a Lithuanian MEP named Antanas Guoga issued a complaint. “I was really concerned that books were distributed by the help of the Russians. Russian propaganda issues are very sensitive in Lithuania and the EU,” Guoga told the Guardian.

A confidential 2015 memo by the EU parliamentary security service that was obtained by the Guardian stated that their investigation had found that Ellul Bonici – who was working at the secretariat of the EFDD – and three other men had distributed the books. The men had entered the parliament with Ellul Bonici. One was a Russian and the other was a Polish citizen who was born in Moscow. The fourth person was never identified.

The Guardian understands that the EU parliament did not take further action.

The EFDD said in a statement at the time that it had not authorised or supported the distribution of the books and that the issue would be subject to an internal review and “adequate follow-up”. Ellul Bonici’s wife, who is a Eurosceptic member of the European parliament and works closely with Marine Le Pen, denied in reports at the time that her husband had been involved.

There is no evidence that Farage knew about Ellul Bonici’s alleged relationship with the Russian embassy or that he knew anything about the Red Dalia stunt.

The EFDD would not answer questions about how long he had been employed and whether he still worked for the group.

A report published by Bloomberg in August 2015 said EFDD had said that the culprit behind the book controversy – who was not named in the story – had been sacked.

But the two former EFDD staffers who spoke anonymously to the Guardian said they believed Ellul Bonici was working on the group’s YouTube channel while they were working in Brussels as late as 2016.

A spokesman for Farage in London declined to respond to questions about Ellul Bonici.

Ellul Bonici’s wife, Sharon, told the Guardian: “My husband is a very private person. He does not speak to the press.” She received several emails with questions but did not respond to them.

Rohrabacher, a conservative Republican, has denied being a Russian asset. A spokesman for Farage declined to respond to questions about their relationship.

To view the original article CLICK HERE

See also CLICK HERE
& HERE

Also: CLICK HERE

Regards,

Greg_L-W.

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Has #Kirsten_Farage Turned Supergrass For The #EU …

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 05/12/2017

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Has #Kirsten_Farage Turned Supergrass For The #EU …
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000a ukip-025 count.png~~~~~~~~~~#########~~~~~~~~~~

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Hi,

#Ukip’s MEP RAY FINCH MISSING IN ACTION. HAS HIS FORMER EMPLOYEE MRS FARAGE TURNED #EU SUPERGRASS?

FARAGE, Kirsten 09

An interesting theory has been passed to us by someone well placed. Recently, we posted that UKIP MEP, Ray Finch, had totally deleted his online presence and nobody seems to know why.

Here is what our source had to say:

“Kirsten was working for Finch, who used to be his [Farage’s] driver, so he knows exactly where his boss used to go and where he was. After the second Annabelle Fuller article came out in the Mail on Sunday, I believe Kirsten realised they had conspired to conceal Nigel’s shenanigans and saw this as a total betrayal from a family friend and a professional colleague. Her fury being expressed as a mother, daughter, and betrayed wife.

“A few weeks ago Ray told Michael Crick that he had half his salary suspended by the EU Parliament. As many people know, the estranged Mrs Farage, was on Finch’s staff a ‘parliamentary assistant’ despite never being invited to come to work in the building.

“It is entirely possible that the recent Anabelle Fuller revelations may have compelled Mrs Farage to cooperate with EU authorities. If that’s the case, who knows what information she may hold – given that she was copied on every UKIP internal email for the last ten years!”

Finch 3.jpg

Of course, this is just speculation. But who knows what might happen next in the wacky world of UKIP….

FARAGE 1.jpgAnnabelle Fuller went public on two consecutive weekends about her relationship with Nigel Farage

To view the original of this article CLICK HERE

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Greg_L-W.

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