Published on May 3rd, 2007 | by admin1
The Butler Did it
EXCLUSIVE Lord Browne’s lover felt bored and frozen out by the lavish lifestyle.. the servants even stopped Jeff making his own TOAST
FOR the working-class boy raised in a cramped two-bed flat, the contrast in Jeff Chevalier’s life could not have been greater after he met BP boss Lord Browne.
But despite all the wealth, celebrity parties, expensive clothes, private jets and a limitless credit card account at his disposal, the 27-year-old grew tired of the constant sniping by his lover’s rich friends and the relationship began to crumble.
He also found the persistent pampering from Lord Brown’s butler Barry overbearing and craved his personal freedom.
Chevalier’s sister Courtney told last night how her brother’s independent upbringing in the family’s tiny Toronto apartment meant he started to feel hemmed in by all the attention.
She said: “Barry was lovely but Jeff didn’t get on with him. He is from a modest background, so he didn’t like this guy fussing around him.
“He’d go to heat some soup and the butler would say, ‘Let me do that.’ Jeff was like, ‘I can heat my own soup thanks.’
“It got to the point where Jeff couldn’t sleep in without Barry asking to make his bed or something.
“And at parties there were all these old rich British gentlemen and Dames, they would make comments with a smirk, sniggering behind his back. It became a very lonely life.” Lord Browne, 59, was forced to quit his post after lying to the High Court about his four-year relationship with Jeff, once a male prostitute in Toronto. He also loses his £15million payoff Courtney said her brother did not belong in his lover’s world of privilege, even though he enjoyed the cash and gifts being lavished on him.
The 21-year-old said: “Most of John’s inner circle was gay. At first, Jeff was welcomed into it, everyone was nice to him.
“He would attend high-profile events that Tony Blair was at and just stand there with a glass of wine listening. But Jeff began to get bored.
“He started making excuses so he didn’t have to go and he became stressed with the lifestyle.
“Jeff doesn’t like time-constraints put on him, he would have temper tantrums, his life was becoming his worst nightmare.”
Courtney told how she and Chevalier grew up in the crime-ridden suburb of Rexdale with their other sister Vanessa, 23, and brothers Blair, 30, and eight-year-old Wolf. Their mum Maureen, who split from husband Thomas, slept on the sofa for two years until she saved enough for a bigger place.
Courtney said: “It was a really small place, the boys slept in one room and the girls in the other while mum was on the sofa. We had sheets on the windows as curtains and holes in our clothes”. All that changed for Chevalier when he met Lord Browne while spending time in London.
But Courtney told how her brother became “arrogant” after being with his wealthy lover for a while and his spending grew out of control.
Courtney added: “If there was an event to go to, Jeff would say, ‘I need a new suit, people have seen me in this one.’ And he’d go off and buy one.
“He took taxis everywhere and was treated like a celebrity. The family found it startling when Jeff told us how much he paid for things.”
Lord Browne desperately tried to keep details of his affair under wraps after revealing sensitive political secrets to his lover. But he was caught out after lying in court in a futile bid to stop Chevalier giving a damaging kiss-and-tell story to a newspaper. Courtney said: “I don’t know why John’s lied. I know he’s in a respected position but there were things even I knew about before they were general knowledge. John’d know about big mergers and would tell Jeff and Jeff would tell us.
“Jeff knew all of John’s passwords for BP. When John got a new laptop, he’d give Jeff his old one but didn’t delete any of the stuff on it.”
Chevalier is also expected to claim that Lord Browne used BP resources to help him set up a mobile phone ring-tone firm that failed.
Courtney told of the moment her brother split from Lord Browne and returned to Canada. She said: “Jeff suffered anxiety and panic attacks. It nearly made me cry. John rang and said things were falling apart. I believe they loved each other, it was more than a toyboy thing, despite the age gap.”
Meanwhile, the sister of Chevalier’s ex-boyfriend told last night how he dumped him after meeting Lord Browne. John Tricky, 48, saved the youngster from the streets when he was a prostitute.
But his sister Alison Clement said Chevalier changed from a humble boy to a name-dropper obsessed with wealth. She added: “When he was with John he was kind and sensitive, everyone loved him. But almost overnight he became very materialistic.
“I saw him last September, he was a different man. He just dropped one name after another … Elton John, Tony Blair. He bragged about travelling the world. It was such a turnaround.”