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Helen Mirren Tells GQ Magazine She 'Loved Coke', Used To Shoplift

Oscar-winning British actress Helen Mirren tells GQ Magazine in its latest UK issue that she used to love cocaine, but stopped after learning that Nazi war criminals profited from its trade.

"I loved coke. I never did a lot, just a little bit at parties," Mirren tells the mag. "But what ended it for me was when they caught (Nazi war criminal) Klaus Barbie, the Butcher of Lyon, in the early 80s. He was hiding in South America and living off the proceeds of being a cocaine baron."

"And I read that in the paper, and all the cards fell into place, and I saw how my little sniff of cocaine at a party had an absolute direct route to this horrible man in South America."

In the candid interview Mirren also reveals she used to steal in her youth: "I needed to shoplift for food", and even cut her own hair and wore dollar-store glasses.

As for her more recent achievements, the 63-year-old actress believes her Academy Award winning role in 'The Queen' helped her gain more of an appreciation for her country and Queen Elizabeth: "It's a miracle she's never gone mad."

"She is a remarkable person, who has achieved an amazing thing with a life she neither chose for herself, nor particularly wanted."

September 2, 2008 |

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