With Bo Xilai and Gu Kailai now detained God-knows-where, the attention now turns to their son Bo Guagua. The Daily Telegraph has been doing the best job so far piecing together information on our favourite student playboy.
First off, Bo is said to have slipped out of his luxury apartment near Harvard late Thursday evening, in what appears to be a pre-arranged pick-up by law-enforcement officers:
Wearing a dark jacket and pulling a roller suitcase, the 24-year-old, who was preparing for final exams of a postgraduate degree, was driven away in a dark SUV by a besuited officer wearing a badge.
“He did not look frightened, but he seemed anxious to go with them,” a source told The Daily Telegraph. “He had clearly been expecting it”. Mr Bo was accompanied by a female friend.
Speculation was mounting that the younger Mr Bo may have sought protection from American authorities. The FBI’s Boston office declined to say if the man was one of their agents. It is understood that he was not from the local or university police departments.
He was picked up at about 10pm on Thursday, after his female friend told the doorman to expect a visitor and gave him an electronic key fob to let him into the underground car park. She is believed to have left later in Mr Bo’s Porsche, after collecting more luggage.
Matthew Holehouse tells us about Bo’s drink-buying (vote-buying?) antics at Oxford:
Friends remember Mr Bo as a generous individual, but who bore a strong ambition to rise within the Oxford Union.
“He never held back on spending. He was always buying people drinks,” said one. Another recalled Mr Bo’s failed attempt to become the union’s librarian, or vice-president: “A whole bunch of Chinese students came to vote for Guagua. They couldn’t as they had only joined the day before. Guagua tried to argue about it but there was nothing he could do.”
He was also a member of the Oxford University Conservative Association. He paid for membership with a £50 note taken from a wallet containing around £500 in cash, one friend recalled.
“It was quite amusing that the son of a Communist Party official joined the Conservative Association,” he said.
Yet another piece from the Daily Telegraph cites a Chinese businessman as saying Bo Junior “wants to make a billion dollars and be politically important.” It also published a series of never-seen-before pictures of Bo and his friends which indicate he “spent much of his time at university acquiring a coterie of friends and contacts whose future careers could prove invaluable to his family’s business interests.” Also deliciously interesting is the information the paper found on his mom Gu Kailai’s business activities in the UK while he was studying there:
Three years later came her move into Britain, where she teamed up with a French architect called Patrick Devillers. Mr Devillers, who is understood to be married to a Chinese woman, agreed to set up a company with Mrs Gu.
The move coincided with the enrolment of her son at Papplewick school, which charges fees of around £22,400 year. There is now speculation that Mrs Gu may have set up firms in Britain in order to channel the money Mr Heywood was making for her and her husband in China.
Mrs Gu and Mr Devillers established their firm, called Adad Ltd, at a business park in Poole, with a working capital of just £1,000. It described itself in the records of Companies House as offering “service activities” for other companies, with Mr Devillers and Mrs Gu – using her business name of Horus Kai – as its sole directors.
Adad appears to have operated as no more than a “shell” company, dissolving in 2003 having filed no accounts during its three years of operation, and could have provided a front for the movement of funds from China.
Mrs Gu and Mr Devillers gave their residential address as the top floor terrace apartment of Keystone House, six miles away in Bournemouth. Office workers in the building were surprised that a woman with Mrs Gu’s wealth and connections could have lived in the flat, as it is usually rented by students from Bournemouth University looking for cheap accommodation.