Chloe Ayling has shared her story from the doorstep of her London home, just weeks after escaping the clutches of a gang known as ‘Black Death’ who lured her to a shop in Milan with the promise of modeling work.
She says that when she arrived she was captured, given ketamine, and forced into the boot of a car before being kept as a prisoner for 6 days in a farmhouse in Turin.
Describing the ordeal to police she says: ‘I was in the boot of a car with my wrists and ankles handcuffed, adhesive tape on my mouth. I was inside a bag and was only able to breathe through a small hole.'
Just under a week after her capture, the group eventually released her, handing her a letter that said she has been released because her capture was a ‘mistake’ and since she was a mother she could go.
The letter demanded she pay costs of $50,000, that she only tell the media ‘a pre-determined set of information’, and that ‘any sort of disobedience with the above will result in your elimination.’
The letter also says: ‘You are certainly aware of your value on human slavery market and must make a note that this isn't personal, this is business.’
Her kidnapper was identified by Italian police as Polish-born Lukas Herba, 30, who had told the farmhouse’s owner that he was using it as an art studio.
Italian prosecutors say Herba has ties to a group called ‘Black Death’ who work on the Dark Web kidnapping and auctioning off women to bidders across Europe.
Italian authorities released a terrifying document found on Herba's computer following his arrest describing the opening bid for Chloe’s ‘services’ as 300,000 euro (446,000 AUD).
Chloe is undoubtedly traumatised by the experience, but has shared her thanks to those who helped her escape the perilous situation:
'I'm incredibly grateful to the Italian and UK authorities for all they have done to secure my safe release.
'I have just arrived home after four weeks and haven't had time to collect my thoughts.
'I am not at liberty to say anything further until I have been debriefed by the UK police.'
This article first published on New Idea.