While scanning the Hollywood star’s luggage on his journey to Austria, they discovered an Audemars Piguet wristwatch, which the actor reportedly said he was intending to auction off at an event the following day.
A representative for the Munich customs office told Bild: “We have initiated criminal tax proceedings. The watch should have been registered because it is an import. If the goods remain in the EU, you have to pay tax and duty on them. That applies to everyone.”
FUBAR and Predator actor Schwarzenegger, who was detained for hours, made light of the situation while attending the fundraiser at Stanglwirt Resort, Austria, at which he spoke on stage for eight minutes.
He said in a video that’s been obtained byTMZ: ‘You always start things with a lot of drama. That’s what you saw yesterday. And do you believe that? That all of a sudden I was in handcuffs?”
The actor then proceeded to make a raunchy joke, telling the crowd: “I was in handcuffs. Not because of the watch or the customs office but because I had a hot night with my girlfriend Heather last night. It was unbelievable.’
Schwarzenegger, who was previously married to Maria Shriver, has been dating physical therapist Heather Milligan, 49, for more than a decade.
The actor continued: “No, but seriously the woman at the customs office said, ‘If you don’t behave, I’m going to put you in handcuffs.’ And I said, ‘That’s OK. That’s a great deal because usually I pay $500 for that.’”
He called it “a wild experience,” adding: “Because, here you go, you try to bring this great watch ... this very special watch. Now they find it in the luggage, then the guy is looking for a second watch. He couldn’t find it. Because I was hiding it. But I cannot tell you where because I can’t sit down today.”
According to TMZ, the watch that caused Schwarzenegger such a headache was eventually auctioned off for €270,000 (£231,500). Bild claims the timepiece’s estimated worth was €20,000 (£17,000).
Speaking after the airport detainment on Wednesday, the Schwarzenegger Climate Initiative told AP in a statement that the actor “cooperated at every step even though it was an incompetent shakedown”, adding that he would “prepay potential taxes on the watch”