Cartel King Kinahan's Google Reviews Expose Travel Partners

Last week, Bellingcat and the Sunday Times reported that wanted cartel boss Christopher Kinahan Sr. had exposed his movements and whereabouts by posting Google reviews for a variety of restaurants, hotels and other expensive establishments using his alias “Christopher Vincent”.

The “Dapper Don” detailed trips to Zimbabwe, South Africa, Spain, Portugal, Turkey, the Netherlands and Egypt. However, there appeared to be no reviews for trips outside of his base in the United Arab Emirates since the US Treasury announced a collective $15 million bounty for information leading to the financial disruption or arrest of Kinahan Sr and his two sons (Daniel and Christopher Jr) in April 2022.

Kinahan Sr inadvertently captured his own reflection in mirrors and windows in some images posted alongside the reviews, helping Bellingcat and The Sunday Times prove the account was his. 

But that wasn’t all he appears to have unintentionally depicted in his posts. 

Further analysis reveals new details about some of those Kinahan Sr travelled with, dined with and interacted with in recent years.

Adam Wood

Kinahan Sr’s Google reviews showed him visiting Zimbabwe and South Africa on a number of occasions. That he had visited these countries was not new information. Several media reports had highlighted Kinahan Sr’s attempts to set up an aviation venture as well as consider Zimbabwe as a new base.

The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and Platform for Investigative Journalism (PIJ) Malawi had previously reported that Kinahan Sr had met a man named Adam Wood on one such trip to Zimbabwe. According to reports from both organisations, Wood was linked to multiple companies used by Kinahan and was a key player in an attempt to purchase Egyptian military aircraft.

The ICIJ also reported that the pair had travelled together to ​a humanitarian aviation conference in Egypt in 2019.

Kinahan Sr’s Google reviews provided more details of those trips. 

“I was here for the 11th Global Humanitarian Aviation Conference supported by the UN and [World Food Programme]”, Kinahan Sr posted. “The service and food were good as were the conference facilities.” Among the images posted by Kinahan Sr on this trip were pictures of presenters at the conference as well as another of a belly dancer in what appears to be a bar or a restaurant.

An image of a belly dancer posted by Christopher Kinahan Sr to Google Reviews.

While Wood is not overtly visible in any of the images posted by Kinahan Sr, pictures published by the ICIJ showed the pair together at the conference.

Kinahan’s Google reviews page did, however, contain some other interesting information that appears to match previous reporting about his engagements with Wood. In 2022, the ICIJ and PIJ Malawi detailed that Kinahan had met with Wood and several others, including Iranian businesspeople, at a location in Harare, Zimbabwe, in 2019. Pictures showed Wood at a table with a group of people, including one individual in a baseball cap who was said to be Kinahan.

Images posted on a Google review by Kinahan Sr led to the discovery of new details about this engagement. It appears to have taken place on Thetford Estate, a game reserve around an hour north of Harare. Bellingcat was able to geolocate the meeting to this location by comparing a 2019 YouTube video showing drone footage of a “Private mansion in Thetford” with images published by Kinahan Sr, the ICIJ and PIJ Malawi.

Left: An image of Thetford Estate in Harare, Zimbabwe, posted by Christopher Kinahan Sr. Right: An screen grab from a video of Therford Estate posted to YouTube.

It is possible that the group was staying at another residence during this trip as PIJ Malawi reported obtaining guest bookings for the Amzani Lodge, around an hour away from Thetford Estate, that showed they had reserved multiple rooms for four nights at the hotel. Kinahan Sr also left a review of Amanzi Lodge.

“I stayed there for 4 nights for a business networking conference”, Kinahan Sr wrote. 

Kinahan Sr did not respond to requests for comment and Wood could not be reached.

Quentin Richard Reynolds

There was another face visible in the images from Thetford Estate obtained by the ICIJ and PIJ Malawi that it was possible to identify.

To the left of Adam Wood (in this image) is a man wearing a lilac shirt. Submitting the photo of this person into the FaceCheck ID facial search engine brings up the LinkedIn page of an individual named Richard Reynolds.

A screen grab of results from FaceCheck Id.

This detail alone is obviously not enough to positively identify someone. But this search did provide a vital clue that allowed further corroboration.

Web searches showed Richard Reynolds was reportedly convicted in a UK VAT fraud case in 2008 and sentenced to four years in prison. Online searches also showed that there was a man named Richard Reynolds associated with one former Kinahan company. An archived version of the MTK Global website shows Reynolds was listed as the Head of Global Operations at the now defunct boxing promotions company co-founded by Daniel Kinahan.

A publicly available document from an ongoing US lawsuit involving MTK Global Sports Management LLC details Reynolds’ full name as “Quentin Richard Reynolds” along with the aforementioned job title.

A screen grab from a US lawsuit involving MTK Global.

MTK Global had previously stated that it has had no relationship with Daniel Kinahan since 2017. However, reporting by the ICIJ has shown that MTK Global’s Dubai offices shared the same location as other companies tied to Daniel Kinahan.

Analysis of the Thetford and MTK images, along with other online pictures of Reynolds, appears to show that the individuals pictured are indeed the same person. Features on the chin, nose, side of the mouth and eyebrows in the images below all appear to match.

Side by side images of publicly available pictures of Richard Reynolds.

Interestingly, an Instagram account for a Richard Reynolds who looks strikingly similar to the man in these images follows just a handful of other accounts. Among them are the same company (which itself has only 12 followers) whose networking event Christopher Kinahan Sr said he was attending in Zimbabwe in his online review of Amanzi Lodge. The Reynolds Instagram account is also one of just 27 others that follows a humanitarian aviation firm named Crescents and Crosses that the ICIJ and PIJ Malawi reported was discussed by Kinahan Sr in emails they were provided. However, there is no evidence of Reynolds’ further involvement in that company beyond following it on Instagram.

The ICIJ had previously reported that the World Food Program told them that a man named Christopher Vincent Kinahan had checked in to the 11th Global Humanitarian Aviation Conference in Egypt, describing himself as a consultant for Crescents and Crosses.

The outing at Thetford Estate likely happened in late 2019, given Wood and another man visible in the same image where Reynolds was seen also appeared in promotional posts for the networking conference in October of that year.

Archives of webpages showing Reynolds was Head of Global Operations at MTK were captured in May 2019 and May 2020, suggesting his involvement with MTK persisted throughout the relevant period.

Reynolds also appears to have been captured in images posted by Kinahan Sr for a review of Thetford Estate. Kinahan Sr’s images are the first to appear when the term “Thetford Estate Harare” is entered into Google search.

An image of Thetford Estate posted by Christopher Kinahan Sr as part of his online review of the establishment.

Zooming in, the same individual in a lilac shirt can be seen in this picture. Although, they appear to be wearing a dark flat cap in this image.

A zoomed in image of Thetford Estate posted by Christopher Kinahan Sr shows a man in a lilac shirt.

The Sunday Times reported that Reynolds presented himself while in Zimbabwe as an advisor on crypto investments.

The Sunday Times and Bellingcat reached out to Richard Reynolds via email, his Instagram account and phone numbers listed online for him but did not receive any response before publication.

Neslihan “Nessy” Yildirim

Neslihan Yildirim is reported to be Kinahan Sr’s long-term partner. Like Kinahan Sr, she too has posted Google reviews in recent years, describing experiences of establishments in the Netherlands, the UAE and India. Yildirim’s relationship with Kinahan Sr was first disclosed by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) in 2022. 

She was reportedly one of two people who officially formed Dubai-based aviation company CV Aviation Consulting Services DWC LLC, based on a cache of documents received by the ICIJ and referenced in their 2022 report. A LinkedIn profile under the name Nessy Yildirim lists “General Manager at CV Aviation Consulting Services” in its bio. 

According to the ICIJ and the Irish Times, Kinahan Sr sent emails on behalf of CV Aviation Consulting Services when trying to strike a deal to buy a Pilatus PC-12 single engine plane in 2019. 

The “experience” section on Yildirim’s LinkedIn profile also lists her as the owner of a company called “Merbia”, a name that appears on multiple commodity trading websites along with the contact “Nessy” or “Nessy Yildirim“. 

An archived version of Merbia’s website from 2010 details a phone number that also appears alongside the name “Christopher Kinahan” in the 2011 WHOIS records for another now-offline website called The records for the latter website were found by searching for Kinahan’s name on WhoisXML API, a platform that can retrieve historical information about website ownership.

Bellingcat reached out to Yildirim to ask about the details in this story, including those about CV Aviation Consulting Services and Merbia, but did not receive a response before publication.

Bellingcat is a non-profit and the ability to carry out our work is dependent on the kind support of individual donors. If you would like to support our work, you can do so here. You can also subscribe to our Patreon channel here. Subscribe to our Newsletter and follow us on Instagram here, YouTube here, Facebook here, Twitter here and Mastodon here.