Trial of Austrian incest suspect to start in mid-March

January 22nd, 2009 - 6:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Vienna, Jan 22 (DPA) An Austrian court is set to try Josef Fritzl from March 16 on charges that he incarcerated his daughter for 24 years and murdered one of the seven children she bore him, the prosecution office at the court in Sankt Poelten confirmed Thursday.In April 2008, the case came to light when Fritzl’s daughter Elisabeth, 42, managed to bring one of her daughters to a hospital.

The suspect had kept his daughter and her children locked up in a dungeon built beneath his house in Amstetten in the province of Lower Austria.

One of the children Elisabeth Fritzl bore in captivity died soon after birth in 1996. Josef Fritzl, who burned the infant’s body in an oven, is accused of murder as he failed to provide medical care for the newborn.

Besides the murder charge, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years, Fritzl is accused of enslavement, rape, imprisonment, aggravated coercion and incest. Most of the trial proceedings are to take place in camera.

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