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Kurt Andersen’s Russian Undressing

In a profile in last week’sNew York Observer by the suave and preternaturally talentedGeorge Gurley, Russian party girl and professional moochInna De Silva boasts of being a “hustler by nature”and relates several amusing tales about conning men into bank-rolling herluxurious lifestyle. But sources say the fortyish sex kitten left out one of hermost satisfying grifts—the time she took Kurt Andersenfor several thousand dollars. Back in the mid-’90s, when De Silva wasworking as an on-again off-again tabloid tipster, she approached then NewYork magazine editor-in-chief Andersen with a story about the city’smob-controlled Russian call girl scene.

Andersen, perhaps smitten by DeSilva’s “large, real breasts” (as Gurley lovingly describesthem in his profile), assigned her to accompany reporter PhoebeEaton on the story. For months, the magazine shelled out thousands of dollarson the pair’s restaurant and nightclub tabs, even furnishing De Silva with extrapocket money. No doubt sensing that Andersen was losing patience,De Silva finally announced that the big meeting with the mobsters she’dsupposedly been courting had finally been arranged—in Monte Carlo. DeSilva insisted that she and Eaton fly first class to the luxe principality and naildown the story once and for all. But the meeting never materialized and, after a fewdays of watching De Silva and her pals blow more of New York’s money at Monaco’s finer establishments, Eaton caught on and flew home without the story. (Asked about the incident, Eaton refused to comment.) The magazine, of course, had to eat the expenses. Andersen, who went on to blowan additional $40 million at Inside.com, did not return calls forcomment by press time.

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