FBI Investigating Russell Crowe Kidnap Plot

March 7, 2001 -- Russell Crowe pursues kidnappers on the silver screen. But in real life, he's a kidnapping target.

The FBI in Los Angeles has confirmed it is investigating a kidnapping plot surrounding the 36-year-old star of Gladiator, which has been nominated for 12 Oscars.Agents contacted Crowe more than a month ago. The FBI usually does not comment on active investigations, but made an exception due to the intense publicity.

“In light of that, we have confirmed that we have aninvestigation into a plot to kidnap him,” the spokeswoman, LauraBosley, told Reuters. She said the probe was continuing.

Crowe has not yet commented on the case. But reports say FBI agents in tuxedos accompanied him to last month's Golden Globe Awards.

Agents did not reveal any possible suspects. The New Zealand-born actor has become one of Hollywood's most sought-after leading men in the last few years.

According to London's Sunday People, Scotland Yard stepped in to guard Crowe when he recently attended the British premiere of his film Proof of Life. In the film, he plays a kidnap and ransom specialist.

Crowe and his Proof of Life co-star, Meg Ryan, recently ended a highly publicized romance.

Sunday People quoted an anonymous police source saying, "This threat was real and treated very seriously. The FBI were insistent we acted immediately."

ABC Radio's Steffan Tubbs, ABCNEWS.com's Buck Wolf and Mr. Showbiz contributed to this report.

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