Josef Fritzl trial goes on: details of daughter's hell revealed
The trial of Joseph Fritzl, who imprisoned his daughter for 24 years and fathered seven children by her, pleaded guilty yesterday to rape, incest, false imprisonment and coercion. He denied the charge of murder for the death of one of the twin boys born to his daughter and for whom he did not seek any medical help. He also denied slavery.
If convicted he could get 15 years and a maximum of life.
The prosecutor Christiane Burkheiser spoke of how Josef Fritzl raped his daughter about 3,000 times after luring her into the celler in 1984, sedating her and leaving her down there.
On the second day after her incarceration, he put an iron chain around her stomach, attaching it to a pole "so that she had no chance of escape".
He raped her the same day for the first time, Burkheiser said.
She said the underground cell had been "his playground" and that he had "used [Elisabeth] like a toy".
"He came, took her and went again," she said.
Fritzl took three of the children to live with him upstairs, after Elisabeth gave birth to a number of children by her father.
Fritzl is on trial for one of the children's deaths, who was sick and died with no medical assistance; Fritzl then burned his body to dispose of it.
Defending lawyer Rudolf Mayer, has said that his client is not a monster and that he at least did not let his children die.
Mr. Fritzl then did answer some questions about his childhood and early adulthood, and spoke about how he had been abused as a child by his mother. He never had many friends and he had none when he was an adult.
Elisabeth Fritzl was not present in the court, and a video was played for the jury and investigators of a previous interview with her. Elisabeth and her six children are currently in a psychiatric clinic nearby the court.