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Wednesday, July 18, 2007


Tory AM, Alun Cairns, is outraged, but then he has a huge picture of Margaret Thatcher on his office wall and so can hardly be considered an impartial judge. Nevertheless, one does have to marvel at this story about Belgrade-born millionaire Branislav Kostic, who left £8.2m to the Conservative Party because "of his great and long-standing affection for the Conservative party and his admiration for Mrs Thatcher".

Personally, I have a lot of sympathy for his son, Zoran, and his friends, who argue that Mr. Kostic was suffering from 'insane delusions' when he made his will:

Yesterday in court, Clare Montgomery QC, for Zoran, described him as a devoted family man who loved his wife, parents and his only son. But in 1984, according to evidence presented in court, he began to feel ill and started suffering from paranoia, refusing any treatment.

He was, according to Ms Montgomery, "gripped by delusions concerning conspiracies, dark forces and plots to kill him that had already begun to poison his relationship with his wife and sister and came to distort much of his world view. Those delusions over time expanded to poison his relationships with the rest of his family, most of his friends, his professional advisers, his bankers, his business contacts and his colleagues in Transtrade."

He divorced his wife, leaving her with a £1.4m settlement, and left his son a modest house in Gleneagles.

In December 1984 he wrote to Mrs Thatcher telling her she was the only person in the free world who could save "us" from bestial monsters. "You are the only hope for a dignified decent and honest future," he wrote. "Please rehabilitate Cecil Parkinson he is a victim of organised crime ... I am sending a cheque for £5,000 to fight the evil and wicked demons and satans and I am fully at your disposal." He also sent a £3,000 cheque to Lord Tebbit, then chairman of the party. In 1987 he wrote to then Conservative MP David Mellor, asking him to be a trustee for a new will that would leave everything to the Conservative party and disinherit his own family. He asked for his help against the "dark forces" massed against him. Mr Mellor recommended that he should get a new solicitor and the local Putney Conservative Association recommended Trowers, a company used by the Conservatives.

One statement by Andrew Simmonds QC, representing the Tories, sums up how bizarre this whole episode is. Mr. Simmonds told the court that whilst it was accepted that Kostic suffered from a delusional disorder, it was not accepted that this rendered him incapable of making a proper will. All other comment is superfluous.
Anyone who donates any money to a political party has to be insane by definition.
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