Who is Jennifer Arcuri?
No. 10 insists PM ‘acts with integrity’ after US entrepreneur’s ‘kiss and tell’
Boris Johnson’s relationship with the US entrepreneur Jennifer Arcuri is back under the spotlight after she gave a tell-all interview to a British tabloid this week.
Her claims look likely to feed into the ongoing investigation by the Greater London Authority into Johnson’s conduct as London mayor.
The PM could even end up “in the embarrassing position of having to defend his affair at a public hearing”, says The Daily Telegraph, describing Arcuri’s interview as “an old-fashioned ‘kiss and tell’”.
Who is Jennifer Arcuri?
She is an American model-turned-businesswoman who claims to have had a four-year affair with Johnson while he was mayor. Now 36 and living in America again, she first met Johnson in 2012 after moving to the UK to study for an MBA. According to Companies House, she has been a director of four companies, two of which are still active: Innotech, which organises networking summits for tech entrepreneurs, and Hacker House Ltd, which teaches cybersecurity skills.
What has she said?
In an interview with the Sunday Mirror at the weekend, Arcuri made several claims, including that:
- The affair with Johnson lasted four years, from 2012 to 2016.
- The pair first had sex on 29 August 2012 in her Shoreditch flat just before the Paralympics ceremony.
- Johnson begged her for intimate photos and described one such picture as enough “to make a bishop kick through a stained-glass window”.
- They had sex on the sofa in Johnson’s family home while he was still married to Marina Wheeler. Arcuri said they read Shakespeare as a “foreplay routine” and that: “After we made love… I felt conflicted being there in his family home and seeing him like this but I couldn’t help but love the feeling of being desired.” She has also released a selfie she took in Johnson’s kitchen while he was apparently out buying cheese from a corner shop.
What is being investigated?
The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) has already looked into allegations that Johnson used his position as mayor to benefit Arcuri, who went on City Hall trade missions to New York, Malaysia and Singapore and secured £126,000 in taxpayer-funded sponsorship for her businesses. It found no evidence that he influenced the payments or trips, and no criminal investigation was pursued.
However, it did establish that “there was a close association between Mr Johnson and Ms Arcuri and there may have been an intimate relationship”.
The PM still faces a separate inquiry by the oversight committee at the Greater London Authority (GLA), responsible for the mayor’s office, into claims that his secret relationship with Arcuri might have breached the Nolan Principles of Public Life, a code of conduct for holders of public office.
The Telegraph says it understands that the GLA committee will write to Johnson, “probably after the mayoral elections in May, asking why he did not declare his relationship, confidentially at least”.
It adds: “If the committee is unhappy with his written responses, it could demand that he gives evidence in public.”
Has Johnson responded?
The PM has not denied an affair with Arcuri, and his press secretary Allegra Stratton yesterday insisted: “He does believe in the wider principles of integrity and honesty. He acts with integrity and is honest. He follows the Nolan principles when conducting himself in public life.”