An American super-model was fired by one of her biggest clients on Monday after she defended boyfriend Mutassim Gadhafi and the Gadhafi family in an interview with Italian media.
Vanessa Hessler, a 23-year-old Italian-American, who has previously appeared in ads for Calvin Klein, Giorgio Armani and L'Oreal, said that she had shared a relationship of four years with Mutassim Gadhafi, the 36-year-old son and heir of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi who was captured and killed in Libya alongside his father outside the Libyan city of Sirte on Oct. 21.
During an interview with Italian magazine Diva e Donna, Hessler said four years she had shared a passionate relationship with Muammar Gaddafi's son Mutassim and praised his family. The model-turned-actress also said that she was crying for Libya, adding that the rebels are “people who don't know what they're doing.”
“I didn't have any contact with him since the uprising broke out, but our relationship was one of passion. The Gaddafi family is not as they are being depicted, they are normal people.” Vanessa Hessler in Diva e Donna
Hessler had been the face of German Telecommunications firm Telefonica Germany's and its subsidiary Alice, who announced that they will stop working with the 23-year-old model-turned actress and remove her face from its web-page. Hessler was the company's advertising face for years, and giant posters featuring the model were a fixture in many German cities.
“Vanessa Hessler has failed to distance herself from her comments on the conflict in Libya.” - Telefonica Germany spokesman Albert Fetsch
Talks between Telefonica and Hessler's agency did not yield a solution because Hessler stood to her comments, said Fetsch. “We and our clients have no comprehension for what she said.”
Hessler also told the magazine, "We, France and the United Kingdom, financed the rebels but people don't know what they are doing.” Those words may become prophetic with the latest news about the rebels and their possible affiliations coming to light.
It stands to reason that Mutassim Gadhafi was quite the playboy. Reportedly Talitha van Zon, another model and ex-girlfriend of Mutassim’s, was evacuated from Libya to Malta in August. At the time she stated that their three-month relationship had ended years ago but that they remained friends.