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Sun, 29 March 2020

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Boris Johnson referred to police watchdog over links with American businesswoman

Boris Johnson referred to police watchdog over links with American businesswoman
2 min read

The police watchdog will decide whether to open a criminal investigation into allegations the prime minister granted favours to a friend when he was London mayor.

The Greater London Authority (GLA) has asked the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) to consider whether Boris Johnson should be investigated for his relationship with businesswoman Jennifer Arcuri.

It is alleged that the American tech entrepreneur received favourable treatment due to her friendship with Mr Johnson.

Last week, The Sunday Times reported that Ms Arcuri had been invited on trade missions and given a total of £126,000 in public grants while Mr Johnson was London mayor.

The GLA’s monitoring officer said it had written to the IOPC "so it can assess whether or not it is necessary to investigate the former mayor of London for the criminal offence of misconduct in public office".

In the letter, it is alleged that Ms Arcuri received favourable treatment “when she and her companies could not have expected otherwise to receive those benefits”.

The IOPC will now assess whether to open a criminal probe into Mr Johnsons conduct.

The police body is involved as the role of mayor of London is also London's police and crime commissioner.

Mr Johnson has denied any wrongdoing, and Number 10 have branded the referral as a “politically motivated attack”.

According to the BBC, a spokesperson for Downing Street said: "The prime minister, as Mayor of London, did a huge amount of work when selling our capital city around the world, beating the drum for London and the UK.

"Everything was done with propriety and in the normal way."

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