An Italian man, Franceso Galdeli accused of posing as Hollywood actor, George Clooney to sell clothes online has been arrested with his wife in Thailand after several years on the run.
Thai Police said the 58-year-old Galdeli and his wife, 45-year-old Vanja Goffi were arrested on Saturday by a joint operation of Interpol agents from Rome and Thai investigators.
The couple, dubbed the Italian Bonnie and Clyde have been on Interpol’s wanted list since 2013. Galdeli was arrested near the city of Pattaya on suspicion of staying in the country illegally while his wife was arrested on suspicion of overstaying her visa.
According to Thai authorities, the couple overstayed their visas and had been living in Thailand since 2014. They are also accused of various other scams in Italy, including selling fake Rolex watches online and sending packets of salt to customers instead.
“During interrogation, Francesco confessed to claiming to be George Clooney and opening a clothes business to trick people into sending money,” a statement from Thailand’s crime suppression division said.
Police said the couple do not yet have a lawyer but will be charged for overstaying their visas before extradition proceedings begin.
They said Galdeli was sentenced by a Milan court in 2010 to serve more than eight years in jail after being found guilty of impersonating the actor to trick investors but fled the country.
He was then arrested in July 2014 at Pattaya’s Dusit Thani Hotel but managed to escape a day later after he paid prison guards 20,000 Thai baht (£500) to cover up his absconding.
Clooney sued and testified against them in a 2010 trial in Italy, saying they had fraudulently used his name. The Oscar winner said he never approved any affiliation with the bogus brand ‘GC Exclusive by George Clooney’.