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John Paul Getty Iii

Andrew Getty's school friends says he was a hard partying drug user

John Paul Getty III had his ear cut off by Italian mobsters after being held to ransom for a portion of his wealthy family's fortune - which his grandfather initially refused to pay.

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October 21, 1973: John Paul Getty III loses an ear. Until the family received the 16-year-old's ear, they thought the teenager had staged his own kidnapping. Getty was held for 5 months in a mountain hideout, before his grandfather reluctantly agreed to ransom him -- but only for the maximum allowable tax deduction for the event.

John Paul Getty III

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December 15, 1973: John Paul Getty III, the grandson of American billionaire J. Paul Getty, is found alive near Naples, five months after his kidnapping by an Italian gang. J. Paul Getty, who became the richest man in the world in 1957, had initially refused to pay his 16-year-old grandson’s $17 million ransom but finally agreed to cooperate after the boy’s severed right ear was sent to a newspaper in Rome. He eventually secured his grandson’s release by paying just $2.7 million, the maximum…

Proof that money can't buy happiness: John Paul Getty III destroyed by his family's billions

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john paul getty iii kidnapping - Google Search

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In this Sept. 13, 1974 file photo, J. Paul Getty III, right, stands beside his then bride Martine Zacher, after their marriage in the village of Sovicille, Italy. Getty, the troubled grandson of a U.S. multibillionaire oil magnate who once lost an ear in a grisly kidnapping, has died at age 54. His son, actor Balthazar Getty, confirmed Tuesday Feb. 8, 2011 that his father died Saturday Feb. 5, 2011 surrounded by his family at his English mansion in Buckinghamshire, northwest of London. The…

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john paul getty iii kidnapping - Google Search

Oh, what a crazy kidnap: Police thought Paul Getty had staged his abduction to steal his family's billions. Then a severed ear turned up. New book reveals how case has become even more bizarre...

John Paul Getty III after his release from captivity in 1974, seen here leaving the local police station in Lagonegro, Southern Italy

November 8, 1973: The right ear of John Paul Getty III, the grandson of oil tycoon Jean Paul Getty, is delivered to a newspaper along with a ransom note saying "This is Paul’s ear. If we don’t get some money within 10 days, then the other ear will arrive. In other words, he will arrive in little bits.". The message finally convinced J.Paul Getty Sr. to pay $2.9 million in ransom. Getty III was later found alive at a gas station in the province of Potenza on December 15, shortly after the…