The British model who was kidnapped and kept as a prisoner in Italy has revealed she was prepared to sleep with her captor in a bid to stay alive.
Chloe Ayling was held captive by Polish national Lukasz Herba for six days at a house in Milan before she was released at the British embassy in the Italian city.
Speaking for the first time since Herba was jailed for more than 16 years over the kidnapping, the 20-year-old, from Coulsdon, south London, told The Sun what she would have done to ensure her survival.
She said: ‘I thought I might have to sleep with him to survive. My only move to get out of there alive was to get him to like me.’
Ms Ayling said it was the prospect of romance that ensured Herba kept her alive.
She added: ‘When he asked to kiss me I didn’t say no. I didn’t want to upset him. Instead I would say, ‘Maybe in the future.’
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‘I thought that if I gave him what he wanted that there would be no point in him releasing me.’
Herba claimed that Ms Ayling’s kidnapping was part of a publicity stunt she went along with in a bid to boost her career.
Commenting on the claims, Ms Ayling said: ‘The media were quoting this crazy guy in the headlines and people were reading it as the truth. They had no idea how crazy this guy is.’
After Herba was sentenced to 16 years and nine months for the kidnapping, Ms Ayling’s lawyer said the model felt ‘vindicated’.
Adrian Sington, who represented Ms Ayling, said: ‘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 – her story is true.
‘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 be able to say, ‘I know it’s a bizarre story but it’s a true one’.’
Herba claimed he did not knowingly take part in any crime, according to his lawyer.
He previously said his involvement stemmed from wanting to raise money to treat his leukaemia and that he was hired by a group of Romanians to rent properties around Europe to store garments they were selling.
Ms Ailing was drugged and stuffed into a suitcase shortly after arriving at an address in Milan for a modelling job last year.
She told prosecutors that she did not try to escape from the farmhouse where she was being held because she believed Herba’s threats that he was working for a criminal gang who were constantly watching her.