United Kingdom model 'kidnapped in Milan in bid to auction her off online'

Herbert Rhodes
August 6, 2017

A British model was drugged and abducted for a week in Italy last month by a British-based Pole who allegedly tried to auction her off as a sex slave on the dark web, Italian police said Saturday.

Police said she was held for a week in abandoned offices in the city and officers are now looking for accomplices after the model told them she was "attacked by two people".

According to court documents, the woman was drugged by her abductor and held in a small town in the north-western Piedmont region of Italy.

Her captors seemed to have a change of heart when they found out the model had a two-year-old child, and told police their "rules exclude kidnapping mothers" and made a decision to try and release her, the local paper reported.

The woman was then kept handcuffed to a wooden chest of drawers in a bedroom for six days until she was released.

The 20-year-old woman had been lured to Milan by the promise of a modelling shoot, after the alleged kidnappers had contacted her agent to book her.

Police said no one took part in auction and it was unclear if Herba was serious about the plan or whether he was a "fantasist".

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Herba allegedly offered the model's freedom in exchange for about USD$60,000 (A$75,000) and threatened to kill her if she told police.

Officials have released a mugshot of the suspect, named as 30-year-old Lukasz Pawel Herba.

While it is unclear why the kidnapping came to an end, it is the reported the 20-year-old was released because she had a two-year-old child and the gang's "rules" prevent them from kidnapping and trafficking mothers.

It was not immediately clear why the suspect took the model to the consulate.

It is understood the police investigation involved reconstructing the kidnapping scene and studying CCTV footage from the area.

While holding her hostage, the man demanded around £45,100 (€50,000) from her if she wished to be freed. He later moved the model to a farmhouse close to Turin, some 120 miles away, where she was held captive for six days.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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