British model Chloe Ayling's kidnapper convicted for drugging and holding her for ransom with sex trafficking threats
Chloe Ayling was kidnapped last year at the young age of 20 and was held for ransom for several days.
A model's job seems like a dream come true in most scenarios, but not for Chloe Ayling, what seemed like a relatively normal way to go about her profession, ended up turning into a harrowing life experience. The model was kidnapped last year at the young age of 20 and held for ransom for several days after being lured to Italy and getting drugged in an obsessive plot by a man called Lukasz Herba.
While recounting the horrific experience, Chloe said that she believed she might die or even get sold as a sex slave for hundreds of thousands of dollars. She also revealed that she was told that her captor was the member of a gang that had targeted her for trafficking by the “Black Death Group.”
Later on, Herba, however, admitted that he was the sole mastermind behind the sick crime but had kidnapped the model with alleged help from his brother, who is also being sought by the Italian authorities for prosecution. The BBC, however, reports that the brother has spilled that he wasn't involved in any of this.
As for Chloe's side of the story, her ordeal began when she had traveled from London to Milan after being called for a photo shoot. What followed instead was her getting drugged with the tranquilizer ketamine, following which she was handcuffed and zipped into a bag. She was then driven in the trunk of a car to a farmhouse outside Turin, which is more than 100 miles away.
Chloe had been held captive for a total of six days back in July last year, before getting released at a British consulate in Italy.
Herba revealed the only reason he let her go was because she was a mother.
Back when the case had just surfaced, it had made headlines due to its unusual details, especially because Herba claimed that the whole ordeal was just an elaborate ruse plotted with Chloe's consent to help her financially and professionally.
He also contended that he was "in love" with her and has since continually protested allegations against him, claiming he's innocent.
Authorities, of course, didn't buy Herba's claims and eventually, he was sentenced to 16 years and nine months in prison for being found guilty of kidnapping Chloe and charging a ransom.
He was sentenced on Monday and was also convicted on charges of attempted extortion and carrying false documents. As per BBC's reports, the authorities found that Chloe had no hand in her abduction.
“This has been an incredible burden on her shoulders for the last year, in the face of media criticism of her motivation, and this is vindication,” the Guardian quoted Chloe’s agent, Adrian Sington saying post the guilty verdict's announcement.
“Her story is true," he added. “It means now she can get on with her life. “It’s hard if you’re being painted in the press as a liar, and now she’s able to say, ‘I know it’s a bizarre story but it’s a true one.’ ”
Chloe also took to Instagram to share her sentiments on the sentencing, saying, "Thank you to all who believed in me from the beginning. Today justice was served by punishing the kidnapper with an almost 17-year jail sentence for what he has done to me. Shame on all of the ignorant people who doubted what had happened to me and think they know more than the Italian authorities."