April 29th, 2008 08:22 EST
Daughter held hostage for 24 years
An Austrian judge has ordered continued detention for a 73-year-old man to allow authorities time to investigate charges that he imprisoned his daughter for 24 years and fathered seven children with her.
An Austrian judge has ordered a 73-year-old man held in jail on charges of imprisoning his daughter for 24 years and fathering seven children with her.
Police Tuesday said DNA tests confirm that suspect Josef Fritzl fathered the children, three of whom were held and raised in a windowless dungeon with their mother in the town of Amstetten, west of Vienna. Authorities say the suspect adopted three other of his offspring, and that a seventh child died shortly after childbirth. Fritzl said he burned that body in a furnace.
Police say Fritzl has admitted drugging his 19-year-old daughter in 1984 and locking her in the cellar of a home he shared with his wife. The basement prison could only be entered through a hidden door with an electric code.
Authorities say they only discovered the situation when one of the children was hospitalized last week for an unspecified illness.
Police describe Fritzl's daughter, now 42, as greatly disturbed and under psychiatric care.
Police said Monday they were trying to determine how Fritzl's wife could have lived in the same home with her husband for more than two decades and not know of its prisoners.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.