Duffy Reemerges After Years of Silence to Say She Was ‘Raped, Drugged, and Held Captive’

The singer found overseas success in 2008 with her hit “Mercy” then mysteriously faded from the spotlight. Photo: Florian Seefried/Getty Images

More than a decade after her last album and many years of completely retreating from the public eye, Welsh singer-songwriter Duffy revealed on social media on Tuesday the horrendous circumstances that lead to her anonymity in the 2010s: She was the victim of an abduction. “Many of you wonder what happened to me, where did I disappear to and why,” she wrote on Instagram. “A journalist contacted me, he found a way to reach me and I told him everything this past summer. He was kind and it felt so amazing to finally speak. The truth is, and please trust me I am ok and safe now, I was raped and drugged and held captive over some days. Of course I survived. The recovery took time. There’s no light way to say it.” While Duffy didn’t specify when or where the abduction occurred, or if her captor was found, she said it’s “exciting and liberating” for her to now be able to discuss this terrifying experience:

But I can tell you in the last decade, the thousands and thousands of days I committed to wanting to feel the sunshine in my heart again, the sun does now shine. You wonder why I did not choose to use my voice to express my pain? I did not want to show the world the sadness in my eyes. I asked myself, how can I sing from the heart if it is broken? And slowly it unbroke. In the following weeks I will be posting a spoken interview. If you have any questions I would like to answer them, in the spoken interview, if I can. I have a sacred love and sincere appreciation for your kindness over the years. You have been friends. I want to thank you for that.

Duffy catapulted into the music industry in 2008 with her debut album Rockferry, which featured the sultry international bop “Mercy” — drawing quick comparisons to her fellow soul-pop contemporaries Amy Winehouse and Adele. Her 2010 follow-up album, Endlessly, spurred no hits and failed to achieve the same level of Rockferry’s critical success. In the ensuing decade, Duffy would resurface very rarely, with her most notable work being a supporting role in the 2015 crime thriller Legend.

Duffy Reemerges, Says She Was ‘Raped, Drugged, Held Captive’