Police speak out over Russian model's Putin poison claim

Nellie Chapman
September 20, 2018

Police investigating the latest suspected poisoning incident in Salisbury are reportedly exploring the possibility it could be a freakish hoax.

Alex King, 42, was admitted to hospital with his wife, six months after a nerve agent attack in the same city.

According to BBC News, police are investigating the possibility that the incident could have been a hoax, with a source saying: "we can't rule anything out".

The British tabloid The Sun featured an interview with Russian model Anna Shapiro on its cover on Sep. "Now this has happened", Shapiro told The Sun. The Israeli citizen of Russian heritage claimed in the now-removed Sun article that Moscow is responsible for their "poisoning".

Emergency services initially said the man and woman had symptoms "consistent with Novichok poisoning" but this has now been eliminated as the cause.

"Tests have confirmed that the two patients who fell ill in Prezzo restaurant in Salisbury on Sunday evening were not exposed to any kind of nerve agent", Wiltshire Police said in a statement.

"Therefore, at this stage, we are not linking their illness to the recent poisonings in Salisbury and Amesbury".

Meghan Markle’s mom pays a visit to Kensington Palace
Meghan joined the women to help make the delicious food, before her mother and husband Harry arrived to enjoy the reception. The mother and daughter have not been seen together in public since the royal wedding on 19 May.

It is understood that the couple also tested negative for any other poisons, including rat poison.

The Eton-educated businessman is said to have sneaked into a line-up of celebrities at a premiere for the film "The History Boys" in London. He said at the time that the "prank" was carried out as part of a $132,000 bet from his employer.

In 2004, he pleaded guilty to three counts of distributing indecent photographs or pseudo-photographs of children at London's Horseferry Road Magistrates' Court.

Mr King and his wife, Anna Shapiro, 30, were discharged from Salisbury district hospital yesterday. Both victims were hospitalized.

"I want to thank them for rising to the occasion yet again", she added.

Ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned in March with the deadly nerve agent Novichok, which led to a major operation by the British security forces.

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