Nov 9, 2017 ยท 3 minutes

Anyone wondering why Uber (and, god help us, Pando) investor Shervin Pishevar was suddenly ranting about smear campaigns and Vladamir Putin got a possible answer today.

Forbes reports that Pishevar was arrested (but not charged) in London earlier this year following an allegation of rape.

Just after  3 p.m. on Saturday, May 27, a 31-year-old woman walked up to the Bishopsgate station of the City of London Police and reported she had been raped by one male in the penthouse suite of the exclusive hotel The Ned, a 10-minute walk away.

Officers responded quickly and upon arriving at the scene collected samples of clothing for testing, as well as bed linen, blood-soiled items, a damaged telephone and drug paraphernalia. They also arrested the alleged suspect: Shervin Pishevar, the prominent Silicon Valley venture capitalist and early Uber investor who is chairman of transportation startup Hyperloop One.

As Fast Company writes, while it’s possible that there really is a GOP-led smear campaign designed to discredit Pishevar (although a reader of Pishevar’s vogon poetry might note that Pishvar is his own discreditor in chief),  the rape arrest, which also uncovered ‘drug paraphernalia’, appears to be absolutely real. Similarly, according to Forbes, it’s also appears that Pishevar paid a reported 100,000GBP for a so-called ‘super injunction’ to gag British newspapers from reporting on his arrest.

Nonetheless, Pishevar’s spokesperson insists that the reporting on the arrest is indeed part of the alleged smear campaign by his “rivals”.

"Mr. Pishevar is informed that several false rumors have been spread about him, including that he purportedly paid money to settle the claim. That is categorically false. It is because of false rumors like this that Mr. Pishevar was compelled to bring his legal action against Definers to ensure that his reputation is not destroyed and that the truth will always prevail."

Still, with all the focus on Shervin’s run in with the law, another aspect of Pishevar’s “smear” claims isn’t getting the scrutiny that perhaps it should. Specifically, according to Fast Company, Pishevar is suing Definders, “a Republican-led political opposition research firm” for falsely claiming…

That Pishevar is an “agent of the Russian government and a friend of Russian president Vladimir Putin,” and those connections were behind Russian investment in Hyperloop One.

 Given the current political climate, you can see that that allegation in particular might infuriate and embarrass Pishevar, who has long boasted of his chumminess with top Democrats and even hosted a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton at his home. It would indeed outrageous to suggest that Pishevar might be a full-blown Putin fanboy who used his connections to further the interests of Hyperloop One.

In which case, Pishevar might want to add another defendant to his lawsuit: Himself.

 After all, as I wrote last year, it was Shervin Pishevar who posted a pathetically obsequious Facebook update (including photographs!) about his meeting with Putin in Russia…

18 heads of sovereign funds and President Putin. $10 trillion in the room. Largest collection of sovereigns in history. Then Putin called on me as last word to talk and then responded. Spoke on Sherpa, Uber and Hyperloop One. Putin said Hyperloop will fundamentally change the global economy. Thank you to Caspian VC and Hyperloop investor for this once in a lifetime opportunity.

In the comments next to the post, venture capitalist Megan Quinn asked Pishevar: “Dumb but genuine question: is holding court with Putin something to be proud of in our day and age?”

Pishevar's defense of palling around with Putin was pure, well, Pish…

pride and shame are to welcomed and shunned what love and hate are to embraced and pushed away.

Which brings us back to the overarching hypocrisy of Shervin Pishevar and his outrage at “rivals” attempting to “destroy his career” through secret smear campaigns.

This, after all, was the same Shervin Pishevar who in 2014 continued to defend his bros Travis Kalanick and Emil Michael when it was revealed that the latter (while working for the former) had boasted of a plan to hire professional opposition researchers to investigate Sarah Lacy’s family and destroy her career, following Pando’s critical reporting on Uber.

Apparently that kind of behavior is only OK when it’s Shervin’s friends doing the smearing.