Novichok ‘perfume bottle’ creates more questions than answers. MSM still not asking them

The BBC and other media have announced this evening that, according to the brother of Charlie Rowley, the toxin that poisoned him and Dawn Sturgess was found in a perfume bottle that Rowley had picked up.

Interestingly, an article published online by the Daily Telegraph that now says similar to the BBC’s version first said something very different when it was published at 7.01pm this evening:

tgraph noviboth.png
The original Telegraph article, left, and the one that quickly replaced it at the same url

(Current version here, Google archive of the original article currently here. PDF of the original available at the end of this article, as Wayback Machine et  will not save Google-cached versions)

The original version came complete with quotes from a chemical weapons expert about the likelihood that ‘assassins’ had used Rowley’s house – said to be vacant at the time – as a ‘safe house’ to prepare for the ‘hit’. But the article also speculated that Rowley had found the bottle when he moved in – which would mean his first contact with the poison or its container could go back weeks further than initially thought.

The media may be harmonising their stories, but the new developments raise more questions than they answer. The ‘MSM’ are still failing to ask those pertinent – and obvious – questions or the others that were already obvious last week.

Twelve days

As the SKWAWKBOX pointed out last week, when Charlie Rowley regained consciousness on Wednesday the police had been in possession of his house for twelve days but apparently did not find the ‘small glass bottle’ containing the poison until Rowley woke and, presumably, told them where to find it.


  • weren’t the police searching during this period?
  • if they were, does this mean the bottle was hidden?
  • if it was not hidden, why didn’t police take all potential candidate containers for testing immediately?

It’s not as if the idea of a perfume bottle didn’t occur to anyone. Days before the police found the bottle, the BBC’s security correspondent Frank Gardner had already suggested exactly that – which raises questions in itself, as the coincidence is certainly striking and Gardner has been rumoured to be close to UK security services, a rumour that Gardner has denied, although he has written of an attempt by the SIS to recruit him as a young man.

wired gardner perfume.png
Wired article on Novichok poisons published early last week, before ‘glass bottle’ found


As the SKWAWKBOX also highlighted last week, after the Skripal poisoning in March, police released CCTV footage of a couple they described as persons of interest. Still images of this footage have been published by anonymous authors with claims of a strong resemblance to Rowley and Sturgess.

The ‘persons of interest’ captured on CCTV on the day of the Salisbury attack, close to where the Skripals were found


  •  why have the media failed to comment on this resemblance?
  • have investigators discounted the link?
  • if so, why haven’t the media mentioned what would be an important and clearly very significant development?
  • if the footage has not been discounted, why are no media commenting on the coincidence that a couple resembling the more recent victims was in the vicinity of the first poisoning?

The ‘perfume’

When police eventually announced that the Skripals had been poisoned by means of Novichok applied to the front door handle of their house, we were told that it was applied as a gel or some form of ‘gloop’ to prevent it being neutralised by weathering. This does not seem compatible with the idea of it being mistaken for a bottle of ‘perfume’.

In addition, the Telegraph’s original article suggested that Rowley may have found the bottle in his house rather than finding it in the street and picking up at random or speculatively.


  • when/where did Rowley ‘pick it up’, as his
  • was the poison in gel form? If so:
  • how did the Skripal attackers apply it effectively from a bottle designed to look like perfume?
  • how were Rowley and Sturgess fooled into thinking it was perfume long enough for both of them to handle it without suspicion?
  • Rowley continued to go about his day with a friend after Dawn Sturgess was hospitalised – why weren’t his suspicions raised by her illness after touching a bottle of ‘gloopy perfume?
  • if it was not gel-like, how was it applied to the Skripals’ door handle successfully, since we were told the ‘gloop’ was necessary to the application?
  • if it was not gel-like, how would the Skripals’ attackers use it without risk of their own contamination by the liquid or aerosol form?
  • how long did Ms Sturgess and Mr Rowley have the bottle?
  • if they were contaminated quickly on finding it, why did it take hours for them to become ill?
  • if Rowley simply ‘found’ the bottle and picked it up, why had the police not found it twelve days after taking possession of Rowley’s home where it eventually turned up?
  • why did the Telegraph simply over-write its original article with the new one, instead of publishing a separate update? Was it merely that it was quickly superseded by new information?

‘That lot’

When first interviewed by the BBC, Matthew Rowley said that he wasn’t sure how his brother had become ‘involved with that lot’.


  • what ‘lot’? People? A substance? Something else?

The media

The media have not raised these obvious questions – and other potential ones – that the circumstances, official narrative and new developments raise.

Question: why?


Any of these questions might have perfectly logical answers – but unlike what might be expected of journalists covering a huge story, none of the MSM seem asking them to find out.

PDF of original Telegraph ‘safe house’ article here.

The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.

If you wish to reblog this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.


  1. What if it’s simply not a chemical weapon of mass destruction. But instead a variant of BZ or mind control agent. The USA is pumping millions into Porton Down for research. There is an airport near Amesbury. Obama used it to visit Stonehenge in 2014. Given the history of MK Ultra and the record of Porton Down I wouldn’t put anything past CIA/MI6/MOSSAD. Local addicts or anyone with a history of mental illness would be useful guinea pigs.

    The Novichok book, published in USA, formulae are apparently fake. The book was published to discredit Russian destruction of its chemical weapons. USA patents exist for the use of Novichok in pellets and guns. They even applied to Russia for permission to use it. To point finger at Russian origin.

    The Novichoks are binary nerve agents. Made from easily obtainable compounds. They have to be synthesised and used immediately. B&Q probably stocks the compounds necessary. The problem the USSR had was deployment. Synthesis has to take place just prior to deployment. Logically in the warhead. Russia wanted rid of the whole process the risk of total annihilation was far to probable.
    What this whole event has achieved is to make the use of this appallingly nihilistic compound by non state actors far more likely.
    England defied all odds in the World Cup. Kane didn’t even stay to receive the golden boot. Government couldn’t sabotage our three lions. However they probably thought they would lose to Columbia. 4 days later we hear about Novijoke2. Then they lost to Croatia, calls for remaining games to be relocated. Trump/Putin Meeting and Trump/May meeting. England lose the losers play off. Perfume bottle discovered. World Cup Final. Trump flys to Helsinki. Israel bombs the shit out of Gaza and cuts water supply to 2hrs per day. Labour Zionists launch latest antisemitic smear campaign against Corbyn. Paul Mason and Owen Jones join EUref2 call from the progressive one-per centrists. Assange is still in solitary in Equadorian Embassy. Even though America no longer wants to lock him up.

    1. Les: Re Julian Assange, when and where did you hear this – ie that the US no longer wants to lock him up?

      1. The blatantly obvious just this moment occured to me: If what they thought they’d found was a discarded bottle of perfume, what possible reason on Earth would Charlie or Dawn have to think to hide it away somewhere.

      2. Good point. On Assange. This story has been around for awhile now. It centres on a court judgement. Basically:- A journalist can publish leaks and protect their sources. Hence all the DNC hacking nonsense. If it’s a hack the hackers have broken the law. If Assange colluded with the hackers then he is also guilty of conspiracy.
        Difficulty is every time the real events look set to be revealed another (12 Russian generals) indictment is released. I thought Putins offer to allow Mueller team access to investigators and suspects in Russia was massive. Of course Mueller will never take up the offer. It just keeps investigations going into the midterm elections.

  2. If I were looking for a safe house to prepare an assassination I wouldn’t choose a building under construction or renovation – it’d be anything but safe with tradesmen all over the place.
    Unless it happens to be owned by a Russian with family still in Russia who I can threaten into halting construction for the required period.
    Even then leaving evidence lying around wouldn’t be too professional of me, would it?
    If I’d used Charlie and Dawn as proxies though I wouldn’t take the risk of trying to recover the bottle because
    1. they’d know how they’d been used as soon as the Skripal story broke and
    2. I couldn’t be certain they hadn’t contaminated themselves.

    But that’s just my rules of assassination – you guys do it your way 🙂

  3. Yes, and the perfume bottle had ‘Made in Russia’s on it, and could only have been made in Russia. (That’s coming next).

    1. Sounds like a very accurate assessment of what to expect.

      The next day they will find a till receipt stuck to the base of the bottle, which had completely escaped their attention. The receipt from a Moscow pharmacy shows a card payment in the name of Mr V Putin.

      None of which can be presented as evidence for reasons of national security.

  4. The whole Novichok story makes less sense every day. Going back to Sergei Skripal, why would the KGB try such a complicated method to assassinate him? Plenty of cheap-and-cheerful methods available; hit and run with a stolen car, a fatal mugging, chuck him off a bridge etc. No need to do it the hard way.

    And now the first of today’s “developments”. According to the safe house version a team of highly trained agents use a top secret chemical weapon and then just leave it lying about after the job.

    The entire saga is about as convincing as “The NHS is safe in our hands”. It seems the government and their mouthpieces just can’t stop themselves being bullshit dispensers. But now it has gone too far. A woman has died and there is no-one we can trust to get to the truth.

      1. Thank you for the link, it makes for interesting reading. I expect the Tories just forgot to mention it as they like statistics so much.

  5. I have never understood how the Skrypals both succumbed at one and the same time in spite of being so different in age, gender and weight. It just seems much more likely that they were exposed on the park bench and not 5 hours earlier, before they had had lunch at Zizzi’s and gone to the pub. I have no inside knowledge but the story, as presented by the press, does not hang together and seems to ignore the obvious explanation (even if that is a wrong one).

    1. If they were exposed on the park bench, then how would you explain away the Novichok traces we are told were found in Zizzi’s restaurant, and the Novichok on the handle of the front door of Sergei Skripal’s house. And given that we have NEVER been told that any Novichok was found on or around the park bench, then how does DS Nick Bailey fit into your scenario?

      And come to think of it – as I just this moment did – how does the “perfume bottle” fit in to your scenario, etc, etc, etc?

      And in your ‘park bench’ scenario, just exactly how do you think they were ‘exposed’? Presumably your thinking is that someone ran up to them and sprayed it in their faces, and then ran off again. Well if THAT was the case – which of course doesn’t explain away the Novichok found at his home and Zizzi’s – then surely both Sergie and his daughter would have told the investigaters that afer they recovered, and it would have been widely reported in the media at the time – ie weeks and weeks ago.

      They were acting, and the reason the scriptwriters had them become ‘incapacitated’ at the same time is because they wanted a brave, heroic cop to come to their aid (who would then go to Mr Skripal’s house and become contaminated), and then along with the Skripals, make a miraculous recovery. And all live happily ever-after of course!

      The whole episode was staged.

  6. Steve/Skwawkbox: In the above post – in the section headed The “perfume” – you say the following:

    When police eventually announced that the Skripals had been poisoned by means of Novichok applied to the front door handle of their house, we were told that it was applied as a gel or some form of ‘gloop’ to prevent it being neutralised by weathering. This does not seem compatible with the idea of it being mistaken for a bottle of ‘perfume’.

    And yet the article you link to says the following:

    Security correspondent Gordon Corera said the highest concentration was found on the Skripals’ door handle, and could have been administered through a “gloopy substance which could have been smeared on to that door handle”.

    “…and could have been…”

    So what you SHOULD have said is: ‘…we were told that it COULD have been applied,,,’

    THAT aside, IF a gloopy substance (or a gel) were applied to the front door handle, then surely the person who pulled the front door to when they went out that day would have felt it on the handle as they closed the door – and surely wondered what on Earth it was – and would then have had to wipe it off the hand that came in to contact with it, And if that WAS the case, then surely Mr Scripal would have mentioned it to the police at some point after he recovered. And yet we have never been told anything to that effect.

    But the simple truth of the matter is that it is inconceivable that the forensic experts and the chemical weapons experts DIDN’T check or think to check the front door handle until some three weeks later. Totally and absolutely 100% inconceivable!

    And as for the MSM and the question you pose as to why they are not asking leading questions, well you only have to ask yourself why, for example, they all went along with the anti-semitism smear of Ken Livingstone, when they all knew perfectly well of course that Ken was referring to an historical fact, or why most of the MSM neglected to mention or publish the statement issued by Kelvin Hopkin’s through his solicitor, which of course blew the allegations against him out of the water and exposed them for the lies they were.

    Because they are all part of the Establishment’s propaganda machine!

  7. If it was in the perfume which has been alleged to be found near the site and picked up by Charlie and Dawn then how did it get there?

    If the perfume was in the hands of the assassin(s) then how did the detective become contaminated?

    Usually women keep perfume in either at home or at the place where they are staying or in their handbag. If the perfume had been given to Yulia as a gift then it would have been either found at the home of Sergei Skripal or in the handbag of Yulia. There is a possibility that someone took the bottle from Yulia if she had it on her on the day of the attack. It is highly likely that the person who did would have become ill from the substance.

    If the perfume was at the home of Sergei Skripal then the bottle should have been found at his home which was only accessible to the police after the attack.

    If the perfume was still in Yulia’s handbag and the police did not search her bag then she would have still have the bottle when discharged from hospital.

    Has anyone established the scene of where Yulia was filmed (i.e. does it look like the park in which the bottle was alleged to be found)?

    The door handle theory looks more and more likely to have been reached in order to back up the actions of those quite high up who were inpatient to wait for the investigation to draw to a close. Given the high profile of the case then senior ministers would need to be involved.

    1. As far as I’m aware, what the ‘authorities’ are saying is that the novichok was transported from Russia by the agents/assassins in a perfume bottle – ie it was disguised as perfume – and then discarded by the agents after they had coated Sergei Skripal’s door handle with it, and then sometime later Charlie Rowley or Dawn Sturgess (or both together) found the discarded perfume bottle….. In a scenario in which the perfume had been given to Yulia Skripal, specifically for the purpose of killing Sergei Skripal…… Well, I think you can see how preposterous THAT scenario is without me having to develop it further.

      And as for Charlie and Dawn, it’s one thing a woman spraying a little on to the back of her wrist to check out the scent – and presumably finding that there was none – but just far too convenient that Charlie just happened to do so too, only several hours after Dawn had done so.

      And why – in your last paragraph – do you refer to “the door handle theory”? And WHAT actions “of those quite high up” are you referring to? As for impatience, one can only wonder why it took three weeks or so before the chemical weapons experts thought to check the handle of the front door, which is of course totally absurd and implausible, as THAT would have been the very first thing they checked prior to entering the house, and done within hours of it being determined that the Skripals had been contaminated and poisoned with a nerve agent.

  8. I just did a quick search so as to ascertain when the video clip of the couple was first being made public, and came across an article in the Daily Mail published on March 15th with the headline:

    Spy poisoning police ‘are hunting two Russian lovers who were spotted on CCTV in Salisbury as the Skripals fell ill – then fled Britain the same night’

    As you can see. the quote in the headline is attributed to the police. But when you read the article it says the following:

    The couple left England shortly after the assassination attempt, Rosbolt [a Russian News Agency] reported.
    A source told the news agency: ‘The photo taken from the surveillance camera is not of the best quality. He is a man with dark hair with a blonde woman. They seem to be 35 to 40 years old.
    ‘They are on the street, they portray a couple in love. The faces are not clearly visible.
    ‘From the conversations of the staff of Scotland Yard, I realised that these people were next to Skripal in some places, and on the day of poisoning flew out of England.
    ‘The policemen have asked whether these people are familiar… for some reason, they believe that this couple is from Russia.’

    “From the conversations of the staff of Scotland Yard”. Oh, right, so this anonymous source had access to the staff at Scotland Yard did they, and then decided to share what he or she heard with an obscure Russian News Agency, and tells the news agency that “for some reason, they believe that this couple is from Russia”.

    Well it couldn’t be more conclusive could it. And to think that millions of people read this propaganda garbage and swallow it wholesale (mind you, there’s more than a few people in the comments section who DIDN’T):


    PS And as far as I have been able to make out so far – when I did a search to check out Rosbolt – it was closed down in 2013…… but maybe it was reopened again sometime later. But even if it DID reopen, it’s all a pile of unowhat!

    I mean it’s just too unreal for words. If Scotland Yard police – somehow! – had evidence that they were Russian, what possible reason would or could they have for not passing the information on to the media themselves.

    1. From the CNN article:

      ‘Their departure was revealed in a coded Russian message to Moscow sent after the attack, which was intercepted by a British base in Cyprus, the source said.’

      Oh right, sounds so plausible, and not at all like something out of a spy thriller!

      I wonder why it took over four months to inform the MSM of this cleverly disguised ‘coded Russian message’ if it was sent just after the attack, so-called?

      What a heap of complete and utter B/S!

Leave a Reply