Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

TALKING EUROPE

Catalonia independence vote: Tensions rise between Barcelona and Madrid

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Catalonia’s regional foreign affairs chief: ‘This referendum is not illegal’

Read more

ENCORE!

Music show: Lucy Rose live, Ibeyi and Miley Cyrus

Read more

FOCUS

Judicial reforms: Polish government on collision course with EU

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Euro, stocks slide on Merkel's lacklustre election win

Read more

#THE 51%

Hola 'Ellas Hoy' - The 51 Percent welcomes its sister show on FRANCE 24 Spanish

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Donald Trump Vs NFL: America's divider in chief or America's saviour?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

National security or personal freedom? French MPs discuss anti-terrorism bill

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Dotard: An educational insult

Read more

Austrian incest father 'plotting for years'

Latest update : 2008-05-05

Josef Fritzl, accused of keeping his daughter as a sex-slave in an underground cellar for 24 years, was plotting for years. Austrian police say he began planning the dungeon in 1979. Fritzl's lawyer defended his client's insanity plea.

The man accused of keeping his daughter as a sex slave in a windowless Austrian cellar for 24 years may have planned to build the tiny cell where she was held years earlier, police said on Monday.
  
Josef Fritzl, 73, built an extension to his house at number 40 Ybbsstrasse between 1978 and 1983.
  
The original house dated back to around 1890. Fritzl received permission to build the extension in 1978.
  
"We believe that, already in the planning phase, the intention must have been there to build... a secret area, a small dungeon," chief investigator Franz Polzer told a news conference here.
  
Fritzl, currently in custody, has admitted to police that he imprisoned and sexually abused his daughter Elisabeth, now 42, in a cramped bunker beneath the family home since 1984 when she was 18.
  
Initially, Elisabeth was held in a single room of 35 square metres (380 square feet), but when she became pregnant from the sexual abuse and gave birth to several children, Fritzl extended the dungeon, breaking through walls into other unused cellar rooms beneath the older part of the house, Polzer explained.
  
By 1993, the dungeon comprised three rooms measuring a total 55 square metres, the investigator said.
  
Polzer said they had found an earlier entrance to the dungeon, a half-tonne concrete door, that had clearly been used before the two reinforced steel doors that investigators had initially found.
  
In all, "if you want to get into the dungeon, you have to go through eight locked doors" and electronic combinations were needed to open the last three, he said.
  
For the past week, around 30 investigators have been closely examining the cellar where Elisabeth Fritzl and three of her children were kept prisoner by Josef Fritzl.
  
A total seven children were born from the abuse, three of whom were kept incarcerated in the dungeon.
  
Another three were legally adopted by Fritzl and lived with him in the house upstairs. The seventh child died shortly after birth and Fritzl told investigators he disposed of the body in a wood-fired boiler in the cellar.

Date created : 2008-05-05

COMMENT(S)