His relationship with Jennifer Arcuri to be investigated
Jennifer Arcuri and Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson may be made to give evidence at City Hall as part of a probe into his relationship with Jennifer Arcuri, it has been claimed.
Ms Arcuri, an American businesswoman, revealed to the Sunday Mirror this weekend details of her “intimate relationship” with Mr Johnson between 2012 and 2016, at which time he was Mayor of London.
A source close to City Hall this Monday (29 March0 told the Local Democracy Reporting Service that a probe into Mr Johnson’s conduct as mayor is likely to resume in the summer once the GLA Elections have concluded.
The matter had been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) in September 2019 by the GLA monitoring officer.
The monitoring officer, who works independently of City Hall to monitor the conduct of staff, had asked the IOPC to determine whether Ms Arcuri had benefitted from her “close friendship” with the mayor at the time.
But the IOPC last year decided not to pursue a criminal investigation into the matter and instead referred it back to the London Assembly, concluding that it would have been “wise” for Mr Johnson to have declared the relationship.
The GLA oversight committee, the Assembly body responsible for scrutinising conduct, began looking into whether Mr Johnson had given Ms Arcuri “preferential treatment or access” during his time as mayor, but the investigation was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Ms Arcuri was present on several official mayoral trips during Boris Johnson’s time as Mayor of London, including trade trips to New York and Tel Aviv, though the IOPC investigation found no evidence that the mayor had any role in securing her place on the trips.
Though the City Hall probe is likely to resume in the summer, the oversight committee has no legal power to conduct an official investigation as that can only be done by the GLA Monitoring Officer.
The current Prime Minister has previously faced a City Hall probe into his conduct as mayor over another undisclosed relationship.
In 2010, Mr Johnson was found to have committed a “minor technical breach” of the code of conduct after failing to declare his relationship with Helen Macintyre, who became an unpaid City Hall advisor.
Joe Talora - Local Democracy Reporter
March 29, 2021