Kidnapped British model: ‘I feared for my life’

A British glamour model who was kidnapped and offered for sale on the dark web has been named as Chloe Ayling.

The 20-year-old from south London, who was lured to a fake photo shoot in Milan, has told Italian police about her “terrifying” ordeal and spoken to the media.

Describing the 11 July kidnapping from an apartment in the city, she told the Sun: “A person with black gloves placed a hand over my mouth from behind while a second person wearing a balaclava gave me an injection in my right arm.”

Police said she was bound, gagged and stuffed into a suitcase that was put into the boot of a car.

Ms Ayling was then driven to a remote Italian farmhouse near Turin, around 120 miles away, and held her captive for six days until she was released on 17 July – reportedly after kidnappers discovered she was a mother.

Police said her agent was told he had to pay €300,000 (£270,000) to stop the auction, hosted on pornographic sites on the dark web, an area of the internet where users with special software can communicate anonymously.

Lukasz Pawel Herba, 30, who authorities said is Polish but lives in Britain, has been arrested on suspicion of kidnapping for extortion purposes.

The kidnappers claimed to be part of the ‘Black Death’ group and Herba had allegedly organised other auctions that claimed to be selling kidnapped women, according to Italian authorities.

Now safely home, Ms Ayling told The Sun: “I feared for my life, second by second, minute by minute, hour by hour.”

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Ms Ayling’s agent told Sky News she had landed back in the UK today (6 August) and would be debriefed by UK authorities, and was also having counselling.

Italian paper Il Giornale reported that Ms Ayling was told by her captors that she would be sold to someone in the Arab world, who would then feed to her tigers when they “got tired of her”.

No bids were placed in the auction and authorities said it was unclear if Herba was serious about the plan or whether he was a “fantasist”.

A West Midlands Police spokesman said an address in Sampson Close in Oldbury was raided on 18 July in connection with the investigation

Italian police added that they were working closely with their counterparts in the UK and Poland.

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