Controversial British woman kidnapped in Italy claims, 'I had to make my kidnapper fall in love with me'
One of the most disturbing criminal cases of the last decade is the kidnapping of British model Chloe Ayling, whose traumatic captivity at the hands of Lukasz Herba, and eventual escape from his clutches, has afforded police and the public alike with a chilling insight into the operations of the criminal sex traffickers of the Dark Web. Hebra has since been jailed for 16 years for drugging and abducting Ayling, whom he lured to Milan under the pretence of his running a photoshoot.
Despite the alarming details of the case, and Ayling's own testimonies, her statements have proven to be more controversial than expected. In fact conspiracy theorists have even gone so far as to suggest that she was in on her abduction, and that the whole thing was actually a publicity stunt designed to further her career. Yet now Ayling has revealed that, in order to survive, she had to seduce Hebra and make him fall in love with her in order to engineer her release and escape to the British consulate.
Ayling travelled to Italy in 2017 after making contact with Hebra online, and once she arrived at his home for the 'photoshoot' she was drugged using the horse tranquilliser ketamine, and then stripped, handcuffed, and placed inside a holdall bag. Hebra then drove her approximately 120 miles (193km) away from the city to a remote farmhouse, where she later spent six days living in terror. She was even chained to a radiator for around 48 hours, once there Herba claimed she was to be sold as a sex slave in Saudi Arabia unless she coughed up 300,000 euros (£265,000) and that he was affiliated with the Black Death Group of Eastern European dark web slavers. She eventually convinced him to let her go, after Hebra learned that she was a mother.
Ayling stated: "The more we started talking, the more the bond was kind of forming and once I realised he was starting to like me, I knew I had to use that to my advantage ... Once I saw his reaction to what I was saying that things could happen in the future - he was acting excited and really looking forward to it and always talking about it - it was that response that made me realise I needed to keep doing that ... I had to do everything I could to make him fall in love with me."
When Ayling returned to the UK, she was criticised by some for being facetious and unemotional. But Ayling says that she is simply coping in her own way, stating "I was just being me. I went to the reporters because I thought that would make them go away, but it didn't really work ... People expect me to be crying all the time and shutting myself off from the world, not facing any cameras. I could have chosen to do that but I thought how is that going to help me recover. By talking about it, by being around people was my way of getting over it and moving on."
Hebra for his part has claimed that he did not know what Ayling's ultimate fate was to have been, and that he needed the money from the auction to pay for leukemia treatment. He insists that Ayling was in on the plot with him, but her statements appear to explain why the two of them were seen holding hands and interacting in a friendly way together by witnesses.