Saturday, January 3, 2009

BMW heiress blackmailed by survivor's grandson

Reports are surfacing from Munich where Susanne Klatten, the richest woman in Germany and heiress to the Quandt family fortune, is alleging she has been blackmailed. The Quandt family, which owns controlling interest in BMW, was outed in a recent documentary outlining the family's wartime activities that included close ties with Adolf Hitler and the use of slave labor during the Holocaust to make batteries and munitions for the Nazis.

According to the reports, Klatten, now married with three children, met a man in a bar with whom she entered into an affair. With the aid of an accomplice, the man secretly filmed their encounters and tried to extort some $51 million from Klatten to keep the matter quiet. The accused blackmailer, Helg Sgarbi, has reportedly done the same with other wealthy German women, but in this instance has claimed motives stemming from his Jewish grandfather's subjugation in the Quandt's factories during the Holocaust. Klatten approached state prosecutors when the ransom demands grew, and Sgarbi is now being held in police custody.

[Source: Inside Line]



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