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John Paul Getty III
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    (November 4, 1956-February 5, 2011)
    Grandson of oil tycoon J. Paul Getty
    Father of actor Balthazar Getty
    Was kidnapped in Rome (July 10, 1973)
    $17 million ransom demanded
    Released after $2.9 million was paid (December 15, 1973)
    He was expelled from St. George's English School in Italy.
    His family initially suspected he had faked his kidnapping to get money from his grandfather.
    He overdosed on methadone, valium and alcohol, which left him paralyzed and nearly blind (1981).
    The Getty family finally took the kidnapping seriously when one of the ransom demands was accompanied by his severed ear.
    J. Paul's explanation for his reluctance in paying up was, 'I have fourteen other grandchildren. If I pay a penny of ransom, I'll have fourteen kidnapped grandchildren.'
    His father proved equally tightfisted, refusing to pay for his medical care after the overdose.

Credit: C. Fishel

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