Naomi Campbell Admits Receiving Blood Diamonds

Model Naomi Campbell has broken her silence about allegations that former Liberian leader Charles Taylor gave her “blood diamonds” after they met at a dinner hosted by former South African President Nelson Mandela back in 1997.

In a testimony at the war crimes trial of Taylor in The Hague on Thursday, Campbell admitted that she indeed received “dirty looking stones” from two men who turned out to be the former Liberian leader’s emissaries. According to Campbell, she was sleeping when the two men knocked at her hotel room after the September dinner in South Africa. “They said ‘a gift for you’ and then gave me a pouch…I took it, said thank you and closed the door. There was no explanation, no note,” Campbell told the court. It was not until the next morning that she saw the contents of the pouch. “I saw a few stones. They were very, small, dirty looking stones,” she said.

Prosecutors said that Campbell’s testimony is very crucial as it would prove that Taylor indeed supplied weapons to Sierra Leone rebels in exchange for blood diamonds. Taylor is being tried for his role in the 1991-2002 Sierra Leone civil war that killed tens of thousands of people. Taylor has denied that he ever received blood diamonds from the rebels.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons.