Boris has now seemingly given up all pretence of being a Mayor for the city and people of London and is now quite blatantly a Mayor for the following:

  1. Bankers (nothing new there, they bankrolled him twice)
  2. Lawyers (a recent robust defence of the scandal of UK courts being used to settle disagreements between oligarchs refers, the main beneficiaries of which are rich London law firms)
  3. Oligarchs, particularly those who own newspapers – Rupert Murdoch, the Barclay brothers and, of course, Alexander and Evgeny Lebedev

Reference to the third comes in the release of hospitality records which include the startling revelation:

14/10/2012 Car Farnborough airport- home Sarah Sands, Editor, Evening Standard
12/10/2012 2 return flighs to Perugia, Italy Evgeny Lebedev
12/10/2012 2 nights accomodation, Terranova, Perugia, Italy Evgeny Lebedev

The 12th was a Friday and the 14th a Sunday, so it is, at least, nominally in his own time, we’ll allow him the occasional POETS.  However, those two flights to Perugia plus the return on Sunday from Farnborough raise eyebrows – Farnborough is not a commercial airline destination but a private jet one, so did Mr. Lebedev give the elected Mayor a free ride in his personal aeroplane and if so, why?  Possible enlightenment comes from a 2009 Telegraph piece:

He agreed to meet me for a day and a half at his hotel in Italy rather than at his home in Moscow. When I pick him up from his chartered private jet at Perugia airport, Mikhail Gorbachev is standing next to him.

‘He’ in this case is Alexander Lebedev, father of Evgeny.  So we know he uses private jets into Perugia, we also know he has an extremely posh and exclusive hotel there (the Palazzo Terranova no less, and here’s a Conde Nast Traveller review).  Or is it a hotel?

“Of course I went to parties,” says the son, “but I don’t have time for that anymore.” It is the beginning of the week, and he is sitting on the terrace of the family estate in the hills of Umbria, not far from Perugia. The 17th-century palace is also a luxury hotel. Evgeny likes taking care of the furniture personally.

 If you own an estate part of which is a hotel and invite a friend to stay, isn’t he really a house guest, not a hotel guest?  So, Boris appears to have been flown to Umbria in the Lebedevs’ plane (likely a charter jet from one of the European leasing outfits), put up by the Lebedevs at their country estate/boutique hotel, flown back on the Lebedevs’ plane and finally driven back from the airfield at the expense of the editor of the paper owned by the Lebedevs.  Do you know what?  I reckon there’s a fighting chance the Lebedevs will end up paying that as well.
Now, harking back to the extraordinary rendition scandal, it’s odds on someone keeps a track of aircraft movements at Farnborough and sure enough we have the following movements for 12/10 and 14/10:
Friday afternoon (including helicopters, airliners and piston aircraft which it’s unlikely he flew on):
12/10/2012 12:49	OE-HGE	GALX	TJS61 - Tyrolean Jet Services
12/10/2012 13:07	G-CIEL	C56X	KRH72R - London Executive Aviation
12/10/2012 13:11	A9C-ACE	CL60	- Bahraini? Or TAG?
12/10/2012 13:23	N1BX	GLF4	- Baxter Healthcare?
12/10/2012 13:30	N550GD	GLF5	- Gulfstream Aerospace
12/10/2012 13:37	D-CXLS	C56X	AHO329N - Air Hamburg
12/10/2012 14:08	G-WNCH	BE20	- Synergy Aviation
12/10/2012 14:23	N301AJ	C510	- private owner
12/10/2012 14:31	G-FRYL	PRM1	MHN492 - OXE (?)
12/10/2012 14:38	OE-ILB	CRJ2	VJS807 - VistaJet
12/10/2012 14:42	EC-LDS	ASTR	TGM241S - TAG (Spain)
12/10/2012 15:44	M-LENR	BE20 - BAe Systems Marine
12/10/2012 16:09	G-KTIA	H25B - TAG
12/10/2012 16:11	M-SPEX	B350	SSZ8B - Specsavers Aviation
12/10/2012 16:14	OE-INE	CL60	VJS642 - VistaJet
12/10/2012 16:17	CS-DUC	H25B	NJE140D - NetJets
12/10/2012 16:29	G-TDSA	F406 - William Johnston, Mark Evans
12/10/2012 16:33	G-MAJG	JS41	EZE101 - Eastern Airways
12/10/2012 16:39	G-DOLF	AS65 -  McAlpine Helicopters Ltd
12/10/2012 16:43	LX-JCD	C56X - JC Decaux
12/10/2012 16:49	G-FIRM	C550	MCE3B - Marshalls of Cambridge
12/10/2012 16:54	HB-JGE	GLEX	FPG777 - TAG 
12/10/2012 18:08	G-CGMB	E135 - Eastern Airways
12/10/2012 18:50	OE-GVQ	LJ60	VJS209 - VistaJet
Sunday arrivals:
14/10/2012 08:19	OE-LXX	GLEX - VistaJet
14/10/2012 08:43	G-PEPE	C56X	LNX31PE -  London Executive Aviation
14/10/2012 10:56	S5-AAP	A319	ADR788 - Adria
14/10/2012 11:24	CS-DXQ	C56X	NJE6MA - NetJets
14/10/2012 12:15	G-TAGF	F900 - TAG Group, although apparently it's Roman Abramovich's!
14/10/2012 12:44	D-IIVA	P180 - AirGo Flugservice
14/10/2012 13:09	9H-ALX	A319	MLM024 - Comlux Malta
14/10/2012 13:23	N4T	GLEX - New World Jet Corp
14/10/2012 14:50	OD-EAS	H25B - private
14/10/2012 14:54	11-111	B734	VM904 - bogus
14/10/2012 16:05	CS-DFG	F2TH	NJE2QP - NetJets
14/10/2012 16:26	M-ONAV	H25B - Monavia Ltd
14/10/2012 16:37	M-HOTB	GLF5 - Darwin Air
14/10/2012 16:59	D-CFLY	C56X	AHO348G - Air Hamburg
14/10/2012 17:40	G-RUBE	E135	LNX55GE - London Executive Aviation
14/10/2012 17:55	G-MGNE	E55P	FLJ181 - Flairjet
14/10/2012 17:57	M-LJGI	F2TH - Ven Air
14/10/2012 18:05	LX-JCD	C56X - JC Decaux
14/10/2012 18:10	G-MPMP	CL60 - MP Aviation LLP
14/10/2012 18:15	G-LDFM	C56X - MAS Airways
14/10/2012 18:24	CS-DKJ	G550 - NetJets
14/10/2012 18:26	G-LALE	E135 - Eastern Airlines
14/10/2012 18:33	CS-DFF	F2TH - NetJets Europe
14/10/2012 18:39	N888FR	GLF4 - ICA Global Services LLC
14/10/2012 18:48	OE-GVG	LJ60 - VistaJet
14/10/2012 19:13	VP-BRM	B737 - TAG Group, they fly it a lot around Europe, particularly to Switzerland. Has an odd antenna fit...
14/10/2012 19:39	G-GMAA	LJ45 - Gama Aviation

Time and a baby preclude greater analysis here, but the only registration that appears twice is LX-JCD, operated by the billboard firm JC Decaux, which would be rather odd.
What we don’t have an earthly clue about is why he went there (or, indeed, who with), although being a weekend he presumably wrote his 15/10/2012 chickenfeed column for the Telegraph from there, all about how Mrs. Thatcher should get the Nobel Peace Prize for saving us from Communism in the 1980s.  Boris’s host Alexander Lebedev, of course, spent the 1980s working in London for, er, the KGB.
 

3 Responses to Boris’s Oligarch Freebie

  1. Geoff says:

    Not that odd JC Decaux might want to be in BoJo’s favour – TfL have one of the country’s most lucrative billboard contracts which is currently with Decaux’s biggest rival

  2. Greg Tingey says:

    Smells like a Guppy to me!

  3. Alex says:

    “Chartered” is a tell – it’s probably one of the NetJets ones, (as they’re the market leader) and because they’re more like an airline than a charter operation, you wouldn’t expect him to come back on the same aircraft.

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