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The dark history of Patrizia Reggiani, the “black widow” Gaga plays in House of Gucci

Patrizia Reggiani was later known as the “fashion black widow” for, supposedly hiring a hitman to kill her ex-husband. This is the real story of how everything happened.

With the upcoming House of Gucci movie, the story of Maurizio Gucci and especially his wife, Patrizia Reggiani has resurfaced. They were one of the most celebrated couples in the ’80s and 90’s jet-set and even after Maurizio's death, they maintained a great public interest especially for what would be discovered later.

Patrizia was later known as the “fashion black widow” for, supposedly hiring a hitman to kill her ex-husband. This is the real story of how everything happened.

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The early days

Patrizia has so many famous quotes that show her lavish lifestyle, being one that refers to not worrying about having a job when she got out of jail because she “has never had the need to work”. But it wasn’t always like that. 

She was born December 2nd of 1948 in a little town outside Milan, Italy. Her mother was a waitress and she never knew her real father. 

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When Patrizia was 12 years, her mother married Ferdinando Reggiani, a rich businessman from the area. 

Little by little, she started having a luxurious lifestyle and attend the same parties where upper-class Italians attended. That’s how she met the Guccis. 

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Her relationship with Maurizio

She met Maurizio Gucci in November of 1970 at a party. They started a relationship soon after and got married in 1972. They had two daughters: Alessandra and Allegra.

Even Maurizio and Patrizia were such a sensation among the Italian jet set, Rodolfo Gucci, Maurizio’s father was not happy with them mainly because he thought Patrizia to be a gold-digger. 

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The downfall of their marriage came after Rodolfo’s dead and the pressure over Maurizio to lead Gucci and how Patrizia tried to control him. 

Maurizio left Patrizia in 1985; however, she hoped he will return one day. It didn’t happen and signed the divorce papers in 1991. 

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The divorce

After their separation, Maurizio forbid Patrizia to use some of his states and he gave her a monthly allowance of USD100,000. 

In 1992, Patrizia was diagnosed with a brain tumor which was removed. 

It was during this time that the socialite started to show resentment for her ex-husband. She even admitted to having said that she wanted him dead. 

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The assassination of Maurizio Gucci

On the 27th of March, 1995, Maurizio Gucci died when he received a shot outside his offices in Milan. 

At first, everyone believed that he was robbed and then shot, however later on it was discovered that the man was really a hitman and the main suspect was Patrizia. 

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She was arrested two years later outside her house. She later became famous for going with the police wearing a long mink coat, diamond earrings and a Gucci leather bag. 

Patrizia’s time in jail  

Italian police had evidence that she was behind the assassination of Maurizio and that she hired a hitman for whom she paid USD$375,000 for the crime. 

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She was sentenced to 29 years in jail in 1998 and was soon called the fashion’s “black widow”. Later the sentence was reduced to 26 years, however, she managed to reduce it to 18 years for good behavior. 

In all her years in jail, she stated that she wasn’t guilty and had no clue who did it. 

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Free at last

In 2011 she was offered freedom with a condition of labor, however, she declared that she had never had a job and she didn’t have plans to begin. Finally, she was released from jail in October 2016. 

She had to take a job as a fashion consultant in order to keep her parole and lives in Italy. 

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In one of the first interviews she gave she confessed that she couldn’t have shot Maurizio because her sight was poor, therefore she hired a hitman. However, later her employees said that she was just joking.

Even to this day, Patrizia maintains her innocence and says her best friend set her up. 

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