Jennifer Arcuri has claimed people “knew” Boris Johnson had a “crush” on her during a grilling about their relationship while he was Mayor of London.
The tech entrepreneur was pressed on whether anyone in the mayor’s office was aware of her alleged relationship with Johnson during a hearing at London’s City Hall.
The businesswoman has previously claimed she and Johnson had an “intimate relationship” while he was mayor between 2012 and 2016.
Arcuri was appearing via video call from Florida to answer questions about her role in trade missions during Johnson’s time as mayor.
She said: “People knew that there was an interest of the mayor in me, that he had somewhat of a crush on me.
“When we went to events, everyone could see the dramatic difference of this man when I entered the room.
“So there was not ever a time where I feel..I had to say anything. People kind of assumed what they wanted, but there was never any discussion about any of it.”
Arcuri was given access to three taxpayer-funded trade missions led by Johnson. He also spoke at a series of technology events she organised and her companies also received £126,000 of taxpayers’ money in event sponsorships and grants.
Arcuri made the comments in response to a question from Caroline Pidgeon, chair of the oversight committee, who said: “You’ve made clear publicly in the press that you had a close relationship with the former mayor.
“What was the mayor’s office aware of this relationship and who in the mayor’s office?”
Arcuri initially responded saying she did not want to go into “personal details”.
The prime minister has also faced a number of questions over his dealings with Arcuri and has consistently denied any wrongdoing.
Last year, the Independent Office for Police Conduct said it would not be launching a criminal inquiry into whether Johnson abused his position to “benefit and reward” Arcuri. Although they said Johnson should have declared conflicts of interest.
Asked at a Downing Street press conference if he had acted with honesty and integrity in his relationship with Arcuri, Johnson replied “yes”.