A new biography of Chanel alleges that feted designer and high priestess of couture was a registered German spy during WWII. Rumours that Chanel collaborated with the Nazis during the war have documented for many years - but author Hal Vaughan claims he is able to provide an exhaustive and detailed account of the designer's wartime activities in his soon to be released book Sleeping with the Enemy: Coco Chanel, Nazi Agent, thanks to a forensic examination of evidence .
Sleeping with the Enemy expands on long-standing speculation that the iconic designer had a double life and was the lover of a spy, Baron Hans Gunther von Dincklage.
Alleged "revelations" in the biography include that Coco Chanel was a registered German spy (code name: Westminster, borrowed from her friend and lover the Duke of Westminster), knew Hermann Goering and Joseph Goebbels whilst holed at in the Ritz, Paris during the war, and remained a Nazi sympathiser during her lifetime. It's also claimed that Chanel went to Spain on an Abwehr spy mission in exchange for the Nazis releasing her nephew from a military camp.
Sleeping with the Enemy adds to fascination surrounding the iconic fashion designer's personal life. The biography follows the publication of Coco Chanel: An Intimate Life, earlier this month, which claimed that Chanel was a bisexual drug-taker.
Sleeping with the Enemy: Coco Chanel, Nazi Agent is available from 25 August.