Sebastian Kurz accused of secretly destroying hard drives in oligarch far-Right scandal

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His real name was Arno M and he was a close aide to Mr Kurz. At the time of its release, Mr Kurz claimed to have been shocked by the video, which was recorded before he entered government with Mr Starche’s far-Right Freedom Party.

But by the end of May he too was removed from office after Austria’s parliament supported a no confidence motion against him.

Who secretly recorded Mr Strache at an Ibiza villa still remains a mystery. But questions have been asked about whether Mr Kurz could know about the affair long before it became public. One newspaper claims to have seen email communications which, if authentic, suggest he knew about the video as early as February 2018. 

The 32-year-old, who will lead the conservative People’s Party into a snap September election, has claimed the destruction of the hard drives was a “legitimate” act to protect unrelated sensitive data. Before the latest chapter of the scandal this week Mr Kurz was hovering at about 37 per cent in the polls. This is a rise from the 31.5 percent the party won in the October 2017 national election – but short of his goal of 40%.



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