Michelle Mone has hit out at the “obsession” with her personal life – claiming she is surprised the Daily Mirror hasn’t asked about her “bras and knickers” following their latest report.
Baroness Mone, who had been a Tory before she had the whip removed, admitted she lied when she denied links to firm PPE Medpro – a group led by her husband Doug Barrowman – which won contracts worth more than £200m to supply gowns and face masks during the pandemic.
She also conceded in an interview last month that she and her family stand to benefit from the £60m in profits made by the company, placed into a trust by her husband.
After the Daily Mirror reported on Wednesday Baroness Mone and her billionaire husband are having an £80m sale of their superyacht, luxury houses and private jet, she complained about the “desperate” media.
“The media’s ridiculous obsession with every tiny detail of my personal life continues to reach desperate and absurd levels,” she wrote on X.
“At this rate, I’m surprised the Daily Mirror hasn’t sent an email asking to know how many bras and knickers I own!”
The government launched civil legal proceedings against PPE Medpro in December 2022 over the deal, saying they failed to meet the standard required during the pandemic – and the firm is defending itself.
It is also facing a National Crime Agency (NCA) investigation into suspected criminal offences in the contracts for PPE procurement.
Mr Barrowman accused ministers of “using the arm of the NCA to threaten criminal proceedings unless we settle” the civil case.
“This is yet again another futile attempt to distract from my husband’s robust fightback against the PPE allegations on 1 January,” Baroness Mone added.
In addition to the yacht – named Lady M – the Mirror reports the price for Mr Barrowman’s villa in the Caribbean island of St Barts has been cut from £63m to £41m.
“Sorry to disappoint everyone, but that’s what happens in my husband’s world,” she wrote in a statement attached to her post on X.
“At any given time, assets are bought as well as sold. It’s unbelievable how these newspapers continue to lap up the leaks and lies from [government] spin doctors and the establishment in general.”
According to the Mirror, a spokesman for Mr Barrowman said: “They have both been very successful in business for decades, so if the Daily Mirror plans to write about every asset that they own, might be buying or could be selling, its journalists would writing for a very long time.”
The pair continually denied any involvement with the firm, but leaked documents showed she had recommended PPE MedPro to Cabinet Office ministers – including the now Housing Secretary Michael Gove.
This saw the company added to the so-called “VIP lane” and given two contracts totalling more than £200m.