German Jet-Setter Was 48 : Last Heir to the Krupp Fortune Dies

From Times Wire Services

The last heir to the Krupp industrial fortune has died of heart failure at age 48, officials of the West German manufacturing giant said.

Arndt von Bohlen und Halbach died May 8 in the intensive-care unit of a Munich private hospital, they said Friday.

West German newspapers reported that he had been suffering from lymph-node cancer since 1979, and previously had cirrhosis of the liver.


Krupp arms production played a pivotal role in the remilitarization of Germany under the Nazis in the 1930s. The Krupp firm employed forced labor in the 1940s and then-Chairman Alfred Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, Arndt’s father, was convicted of war crimes in 1948 and spent three years in prison.

The aristocratic name “Von Bohlen und Halbach” was added through a Krupp daughter’s marriage in 1906.

Arndt von Bohlen was an international jet-set figure who had been drawing a 2-million-mark ($910,000) yearly allowance since renouncing his inheritance 20 years ago.

His exit from the business paved the way for the 1968 transformation of the Krupp industrial colossus from a family-controlled empire into a modern industrial group with independent management.

Arndt von Bohlen was known as an avid art collector and owned a hunting range in Austria, villas in Marrakesh, Morocco, and Palm Beach, Fla., and a home in Munich.

He escorted starlets and such prominent film stars as Italian actress Gina Lollobrigida to nightclubs.

Von Bohlen married Princess Henriette (Hetty) von Auersperg, from an old Austrian aristocratic family, in 1969, but they separated in 1975 and had no children.

In 1972 the London Daily Express reported that Martin Bormann, Adolf Hitler’s chief deputy, had been traced to the Rancho Grande, a sprawling estate that Von Bohlen owned in Argentina.