Senior Landecker Fellow Catherine Neilan works as a journalist for Insider, an online news outlet. Recently, some of her pieces have focused on dirty money infiltrating politics, namely Russian links to British political parties.
According to Cat’s research, Ilma Bogdan, the daughter of a banker allegedly connected to Russia’s security service, “has held a string of roles with Conservative party-affiliated organizations in the UK.” This means she has access to “some of the most senior politicians in the country,” Cat explains in an Insider article.
In further investigations for Insider, Cat has revealed that membership to Quintessentially, a concierge firm run by the Tory party co-chairman Ben Elliot, was used as a bribe by Russian lawyer Andrei Pavlov. These Russian links allegedly led to Tory MPs wanting to oust Ben Elliot from the party, another Insider article by Cat claims.
Finally, Catherine has also found out that Lord Lebedev, whose role is in the spotlight because of questions about security, has been attending Parliament the bare minimum to avoid being suspended – and MPs and peers began to question his appointment and warned about foreign influence in Parliament. More information about this is available here.
To read more about money infiltrating politics and other relevant themes, visit Catherine’s Insider author page.
Catherine is one of thirty 2020-2021 Landecker Democracy Fellows. This fellowship, a collaboration between the Alfred Landecker Foundation and Humanity in Action, was created to strengthen a new generation of leaders whose approaches to political and social challenges can become catalysts for democratic placemaking and community building. Read more about the fellowship here.