Arnold Schwarzenegger detained at Munich airport over $30K wristwatch

Virgin Radio

18 Jan 2024, 12:47

Credit: Getty/ X-Twitter/@AudemarsPiguet

The Terminator faces a time crunch as Arnold Schwarzenegger disagrees over customs regulations.

Bodybuilder, former California Governor, action star, and now (albeit briefly) outlaw Arnold Schwarzenegger found himself in a tight spot at Munich Airport on his way to Austria.

The Terminator himself was temporarily detained by customs officials after failing to declare a luxury watch in his luggage.

German tabloid Bild broke the news, revealing that the 76-year-old actor spent around three hours with customs authorities after they discovered a custom-made Audemars Piguet wristwatch, valued at nearly $30,000, in his luggage.

The watch is as luxurious as any indulgent item that the privileged characters in White Lotus might wear, which, funnily enough, cast Schwarzenegger's own son for a role in the forthcoming season 3.

The authorities initiated criminal tax proceedings against Schwarzenegger, emphasising that the watch 'should have been registered because it is an import.'

Unlike the potentially selfish reasons that his son's upper crust character might have for having such a lavish item, our favourite Commando had much more wholesome reasoning for bending the the rules.

Schwarzenegger, known for his philanthropic efforts, reportedly informed customs officials that he intended to auction the watch for a charitable cause.

Arnold Schwarzenegger in customs

Credit: X-Twitter/@Schwarzenegger

His non-profit organisation, the Schwarzenegger Climate Initiative, had a fundraising event scheduled in the town of Kitzbühel near Austria's Kaiser Mountains.

Despite this, German officials imposed charges on Schwarzenegger, amounting to over $38,000, including more than $4,000 in tax value and a penalty exceeding $5,000.

According to an unidentified source cited by CBS, the actor was not asked to fill out a declaration form and attempted to pay the dues at the airport using a credit card. However, the payment machine was out of order.

Bild reported that customs officials accompanied Schwarzenegger to a bank terminal, where he withdrew the necessary funds. The actor's intention to continue his journey was thwarted, with a customs spokesperson stating, 'the watch will probably have to stay.'

Expressing his frustration with the situation, Schwarzenegger told Bild: "This is the problem that Germany is suffering from. You can no longer see the forest for the trees."

The incident sheds light on the complexities of customs regulations, with a spokesperson for Munich main customs defiantly stating: "If the goods remain in the EU, you have to declare them through customs. This applies to everyone, whether their name is Schwarzenegger or Müller, Meier, Huber."

The actor's fundraising event in Kitzbühel featured various items up for bidding, including a 'training session' with Schwarzenegger himself, along with. 'artworks, signed exhibits, and experiences from the worlds of sports and film.'

Despite the wristwatch hiccup, Schwarzenegger's commitment to charitable causes remains unwavering, even if it means navigating the intricate web of customs regulations.