Fiat heir arrested for faking own kidnapping
ONE of the heirs to the Fiat automobile fortune, Lapo Elkann, has been arrested in New York for allegedly faking his own kidnapping, police said, amid reports that he was trying to pay for a weekend of debauchery.
According to several US media outlets, Mr Elkann, the grandson of legendary Fiat founder Gianni Agnelli, tried to make his family believe he had been kidnapped when he ran out of money during a two-day bender of sex and drugs.
The 39-year-old Italian playboy reportedly spent that time with a transgender prostitute, with whom he consumed a cocktail of alcohol, marijuana and cocaine before running low on funds, the reports said.
He reportedly came up with the plan to ask his family for US$10,000 in ransom to pay for more drugs, US media said.
The family alerted police, who arrested Mr Elkann after determining his claims to be false.
Mr Elkann was ordered to appear in a New York court in January for falsely reporting an incident before being released, police said, without confirming whether Mr Elkann was found with a prostitute or whether drugs were involved.
Mr Elkann’s brother John took over the helm of the Agnelli empire in May 2008 by becoming the head of the company that manages the family’s holdings.
The Agnelli family controls about a 30 percent stake in Fiat, and 44pc of the voting rights. –
Lapo Elkann wanted money for a weekend of debauchery.