In 1963, the British government was rocked by the revelation that Secretary of State for War John Profumo was having an affair with the young aspiring model Christine Keeler. Profumo resigned in disgrace, Prime Minister Harold Macmillan stepped down shortly afterwards, and the Conservative Party lost power in the elections the following year.
Just one year before the Profumo Affair, 18-year-old Christine Ann Rosair/Skinner had moved from her native India to London and changed her name to Karen de la Carriere.
She didn’t learn from Christine Keeler. One night in 1967 or 1968, de la Carriere recounted that she received a proposition from a British gentleman named Christopher Powell—a man she believed to be an “English Cabinet Minister and government consultant.” Truth be told, Powell was not an MP, but was a lobbyist of some notoriety. In fact, he all but invented lobbying in the United Kingdom.
A married man in his 60s—three times her age—the night they met, Powell told de la Carriere that he was looking for a mistress. She immediately volunteered.
Powell set up de la Carriere with a luxurious apartment, expensive clothing, entertainment and a generous stipend, which she supplemented by continuing to work at the casino, providing her “favors” for money or gifts.
…she signed a statement describing her years as Powell’s paid mistress… she was “aware that the Church of Scientology does not condone the above said activities and that said activities are in violation of the Church Policies.”
She learned about Scientology in 1969 and later applied for membership in the Church’s religious order. By this time, she had given up providing her sexual favors for gifts or money. But her reputation pursued her, and in 1978 she signed a statement describing her years as Powell’s paid mistress and that she was “aware that the Church of Scientology does not condone the above said activities and that said activities are in violation of the Church Policies.”
When she left the religious order in 1990 to continue as an active Church parishioner, she reverted to her former profession.
De la Carriere bristles when accused of prostitution. She doesn’t feel the ads she published in 1997 and her subsequent paid affairs qualify.
At age 53, Karen posed as a woman in her 30s in ads promoting that she was seeking a “mistress relationship” with a man who is “affluent and generous” and wants “to support another female in [his] life.”
Was this a sad attempt by an aging woman to recreate her youth as Powell’s trophy companion?