UK judge says suspect in model kidnapping can be extradited

Italian Police's seals are placed on the shut gate of the photo studio, where according to investigators, Lukasz Pawel Herba, a Polish citizen with British residency, kidnapped compatriot model Chloe Ayling in Milan, Italy, Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2017. Ayling who says she was kidnapped in Milan broke down in tears when confronted by investigators with a witness who said she had gone to buy shoes with the alleged kidnapper. According to a transcript of model Chloe Ayling’s deposition obtained Tuesday by The Associated Press, the 20-year-old model initially said she was held at a remote farmhouse for six days without ever leaving. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

LONDON (AP) — A British judge has ruled that a suspect accused of kidnapping British model Chloe Ayling should be extradited to Italy to face trial.

Lawyers for 36-year-old suspect Michal Herba said they will appeal Friday’s ruling by the Westminster Magistrates Court. They had argued in court that the case might have been made up as part of an elaborate publicity stunt.

Ayling said in August she had been lured to Milan for a phony photo shoot, then drugged, stuffed into a suitcase and held by kidnappers who demanded a ransom. She said the kidnappers planned to auction her online unless she paid 300,000 euros ($355,000) for her freedom.

The suspect’s brother, Lukasz Herba, is being held in custody in Italy. He denies any wrongdoing.