Cambridge Analytica CEO Filmed Offering to Entrap Politicians With Sex Workers and Bribes
Cambridge Analytica, the Robert Mercer-backed data firm that harvested Facebook data from over 50 million users without their permission in service of Trump’s presidential campaign, is the subject of a hidden camera exposé on the U.K.’s Channel 4 where CEO Alexander Nix appears to promise prospective clients that he will entrap politicians in foreign elections.
Unbeknownst to Nix, the client he was trying to win over was actually a journalist posing as a “fixer” hired by a wealthy Sri Lankan family looking to insure that their preferred candidates win. The footage was recorded at various meetings in London hotels over a span of four months beginning in November, 2017.
“We have a long history of working behind the scenes you know,” Nix told the reporter. “Many of our clients don’t want to be seen to be working with a foreign company. We can set up fake IDs and websites, we can be students doing research projects attached to a university, we can be tourists. There’s so many options we can look at.”
Some of the more nefarious services Nix offered to prospective clients included bribing political opponents on camera and filming them soliciting sex workers.
In one recorded conversation, Nix offered to “send some girls around to the candidate’s house — we have lots of history of things.”
When the reporter asked him to elaborate, Nix said, “I’m just saying, we could bring some Ukrainians in on holiday with us you know.”
“They are very beautiful,” Nix added. “I find that works very well.”
In another exchange, Nix offered to bribe an opponent with “a large amount of money to the candidate, to finance his campaign in exchange for land for instance.”
“We’ll have the whole thing recorded,” Nix said. “We’ll blank out the face of our guy and we post it on the internet.”
In the meetings, executives from Cambridge Analytica and its parent company Strategic Communications Laboratories (SCL) bragged about influencing over 200 elections across the world, including elections in Nigeria, India, and Argentina.
Cambridge Analytica was founded in 2014 by Mercer, his daughter Rebekah, and then-Breibart executive Steve Bannon to aid right wing candidates in Congressional midterm elections. The Trump campaign hired the analytics firm in July, 2016 and ended up paying $5.9 million for its services.