Drugs, a mural of Stalin, and Boris #Johnson - our exclusive investigation into Evgeny Lebedev's "hedonistic" parties in London and Italy and his decade-long relationship with the British prime minister. By me and @dansabbagh  theguardian.com/politics/2020/…
Johnson made Lebedev a peer in July. He's due to take up his seat shortly in the House of Lords. Security sources tell us he is *still* deemed to be a potential security risk, albeit a low tier one, because of his #Moscow-based father Alexander who was in the #KGB
In March the House of Lords Appointments Commission wrote to Johnson calling for Lebedev's peerage to be withdrawn, as reported by @BylineTimes. This followed a #security briefing. No 10 resubmitted Lebedev's name in July, when the Commission reluctantly approved his appointment
Johnson has been a frequent guest at Lebedev's vodka and caviar parties in London and Italy. The December 2017 bash featured a #Stalin mural, hammer and sickle decorations, and Class A drugs taken after midnight in the dance floor area by a "small number of guests"
"Later in the evening, according to some people who were present, a small number of Lebedev’s guests also consumed class A drugs in at least one part of the house. Johnson was not among them. Many attendees, including Lebedev, said they did not see it and were not aware of it"
Johnson was foreign secretary at the time of Lebedev's "wild" Christmas 2017 party. Other guests including A-list actors and rocks stars were snapped by #paparazzi on their way in and out. There are no photos of Johnson, who appears to have slipped in via a back or side entrance
Three months after Lebedev's #USSR-themed party two #GRU assassins poisoned Sergei Skripal in Salisbury. Johnson, the foreign sec, broke of from the crisis and flew to the Lebedevs' mansion in Perugia, Italy. He left his security detail behind theguardian.com/politics/2019/…
If you have a confidential tip on this or other stories please get in touch! Investigations need sources and often take months theguardian.com/help/ng-intera…

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More from @lukeharding1968

21 Oct
Here's my exclusive interview with Igor Danchenko, the #Russian analyst behind the Steele dossier. He says he "stands by" his work, including allegations that Trump was compromised in #Moscow's Ritz-Carlton hotel. "I got it right," he says theguardian.com/us-news/2020/o…
Last week Danchenko sent cease-and-desist letters to Trump's counsel and to Republican senator Lindsey Graham. Both have suggested he's a suspected #Russian spy who fed disinformation to Steele. The allegations - retweeted by Trump - are "completely false", his lawyer wrote
Danchenko was outed in July, after William Barr declassified his 2017 FBI interview. He says the "smear campaign" by Graham and other senior Congressional Republicans was done to distract from the damning Senate intelligence committee report into the #Trump campaign and #Russia
Read 8 tweets
18 Aug
I've speed read the Senate intelligence committee's report on Russian interference. Story for @GuardianUS coming shortly! It's a treasure trove of new detail about #Trump-#Russia and provides the most compelling account yet of what goes on inside the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Moscow
A Russian intelligence officer is stationed permanently at the hotel, notes who checks in and out, and presides over a "network" of cameras including in guests' bedrooms, the report says. There are prostitutes under the control of an unnamed spy agency. We can assume #FSB
The committee doesn't confirm if the Trump 'golden showers' story is true. It is generally scathing about Christopher Steele. Nonetheless, it collaborates the essence of the dossier: that the Ritz-Carlton is a #kompromat factory, set up to ensnare the unwary and the reckless
Read 7 tweets
22 Jun
Exclusive: MPs who drew up the #Russia report were told the #Kremlin has a "likely hold" over Donald #Trump and there were "indications" #Moscow interfered in and may have covertly funded the 2016 #Brexit vote  - my new book Shadow State reveals theguardian.com/world/2020/jun…
The evidence - given by former MI6 officer Christopher Steele - is the most compelling explanation so far as to why Boris #Johnson still refuses to publish the missing #Russia report, which he suppressed before last December's UK general election
In a confidential 2018 memo to the British parliament's intelligence and security committee (ISC) Steele accuses Theresa May and Johnson - at that point foreign secretary - of putting "party political interests" above "national security" - a "serious mistake", in his view
Read 12 tweets
9 Mar
Revealed: Russia 'hired network of Britons to go after enemies of #Putin', according to testimony given to parliament’s intelligence and security committee - the #Russia report, suppressed by Boris Johnson. My exclusive with ⁦@dansabbaghtheguardian.com/world/2020/mar…
The @guardian is publishing Bill Browder’s evidence to the ISC, delivered in 2018. We don’t know if it features in final report. It paints a depressing picture of British former intelligence officers, MPs, PR guys lobbying on behalf of #Kremlin interests in return for £££££
The eventual report contains two sections - one public, the other secret. The confidential part has already been ‘published’ or circulated inside Whitehall, among spooks and government insiders. It’s this section which is likely to discuss #Russian emigre donations to #Tory party
Read 4 tweets
11 Feb 19
Revealed: wife of #Putin's spokesman faces questions over US tax affairs - my latest with @jonswaine in New York theguardian.com/us-news/2019/f…
Tatiana Navka lived and trained in the US for over a decade. She was a US permanent resident up until Sep 2015 - the year she married Putin's press sec Dmitry Peskov. Navka was obliged to declare her global income. Including from #Russian sources ..
Documents suggest she claimed tax relief on a house she 'sold' in 2009. In fact, the house in New Jersey was repossessed by her bank last month. Navka and her former husband Alexander Zhulin owe $$$$$ in unpaid property tax..
Read 9 tweets
29 Oct 18
How #Czechoslovakia spied on Donald and Ivana #Trump during the Cold War, seeking access to 'highest echelons of US power' - my exclusive report with @RESPEKT_CZ, featuring new archive docs and previously unknown secret agents theguardian.com/us-news/2018/o…
Here's news story on how Prague's StB intelligence service spied on #Trump - in secret operation that was stepped up in 1988, when Trump said he would run for US president. Trump visited Soviet #Moscow the previous year theguardian.com/us-news/2018/o… with @RESPEKT_CZ
One Czechoslovak secret agent who spied on #Trump was Jaroslav Jansa - codenamed JARDA. Jansa reported on a meeting in autumn 1989 in Trump Tower between Trump and a delegation of collective farm bosses from Ivana's home town theguardian.com/us-news/2018/o…
Read 7 tweets

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