Irina Izemestieva, ex-wife of a jailed Russian senator and business mogul who is serving life in a high-security jail for organising contract killings, was found dead at her home in Kensington on Friday.

The 52-year-old, also known as Irina Ford, was discovered lifeless by her friends on a sofa at her £10 million apartment. London Ambulance Service who attended to the scene told Mail Online, "We were called at 7.11pm on November 12 to reports of an incident at a residential address in Cottesmore Gardens, W8. We sent an ambulance crew and two medics in cars. Sadly, a person died at the scene."

The mother-of-two had come to the UK sometime aound 2007, and soon became part of high society as well as royal circles. She, along with her twin daughters, were photographed talking to Prince Harry at an event in 2012.

Meanwhile, her husband Igor Izemestieva, had been in jail for the past 13 years. He had been convicted of leading a gang that committed killings soon after the collapse of the USSR, and was linked to two "terrorist attacks," 14 murders, and five attempted murders including that of Bashkortostani President Murtaza Rakhimov's son. Russian President Vladimir Putin had promised a leading human rights campaigner that Igor would be pardoned and freed but nothing in this regard has happened yet.

Irina's friend, Miranda Mirianishvili, addressed her death in an Instagram post and called it "unexpected." She revealed, "She was coughing, they said, taking antibiotics, and had not felt well for a few days. Not Covid. They found her sleeping on the couch at their home in London. That is, they found her no longer alive."

Other friends of the deceased also said she was active and healthy and they are are shocked by the news of her demise. The unexpected death has sparked a call for MI5 to launch an investigation into the matter, as a number of Russians have died in suspicious circumstances or faced attacks in Britain.

Evgeny Chichvarkin, a leading exile in London, said, "I very much hope that the UK's special services will investigate this case properly, thoroughly, and, perhaps, one day we'll learn what happened. In the past few years Irina Izmestieva was an active participant of a property dispute details of which I have no right to disclose. At another turn of this dispute she was found dead."

Dead Body
Representational image. Photo: Pixabay