The lawyer of Austrian incest monster Josef Fritzl has told how the brute who imprisoned and raped his daughter for decades is “polite and very charming.”
Sick Fritzl kept daughter Elisabeth locked in the cellar of the family home in Amstetten, some 125 kilometres West of the Austrian capital Vienna, as his sex slave for 24 years, fathering seven children with her.
But his lawyer Astrid Wagner – who helped Fritzl write his new book – insists that he is not a beast.
She said: “Josef Fritzl sent me a letter from his cell. In it, he wrote that he had written his autobiography.
“He needed help with the publication, but also legal assistance. I consented.
“He then sent me the manuscript and I edited it. I’ve been his lawyer ever since.”
She added: “He is polite and very charming. So his letter began with flattery for the books I have written so far.”
Fritzl’s book – ‘Die Abgruende des Josef F., or ‘The Abysses of Josef F.’. – tries to paint the calculating monster as a good-hearted man who made mistakes.
Wagner, 59, told local media: “Josef Fritzl is only human, not a beast. He is a man who has not mastered his inner demons.
“He not only lived a double life, but in principle a quadruple life.
“Fritzl is a master of suppression. Certainly, his tragic childhood also played a role in the deeds.”
Extracts from the book began appearing in German and Austrian media yesterday (Monday, 27th March).
Fritzl believes he is “a good guy” and claims to receive hundreds of love letters from avid fans.
He also says that he has a number of illegitimate children abroad.
Astonishingly, he writes: “In reality, I’m a good person.”
And he later describes himself as a “responsible family man”.
Fritzl is currently serving a life sentence behind bars at a unit for the criminally insane at Krems-Stein prison.
His lawyer Wagner claimed: “Fritzl is extremely popular with most of his fellow prisoners.”
She added: “I’ve been dealing with crime for decades. It is often the case that perpetrators cannot recognize the dimensions of their crime.
“You have to try to deal with the guilt somehow.
“The only thing that helps is suppression, there is no other way – and of course the passages by Josef Fritzl can be described as glossing over.”
Fritzl – now 87 – is no longer a danger to the public, says his lawyer, and is looking ahead to being released from prison.
She said of his crimes: “That was a very special situation that will not happen again.”
She went on: “The average imprisonment for life sentences in Austria is around 20 years.
“After the 15 years he has served so far, a decision on his release can now be made for the first time.
“The statistics speak against him – but Fritzl wants to grow old.”
Fritzl also reveals in his book that he does not understand why his wife Rosemarie broke off contact with him.
Fritzl claims in the book to have had “dozens of sexual affairs” during business trips, adding that he has “children with several Indian women”.
Fritzl also claims in the book that he has an African son who “today is a respected lawyer”.
Speaking about his arrest in 2008, he said: “I was completely alone with my thoughts. There was no one I could confide in.”
Fritzl said that in 2006, when the Natascha Kampusch case became known, he said the act of kidnapper Wolfgang Priklopil “made him think” and he expected a “mild sentence” for himself.
The book also details Fritzl’s daily life in prison as he says he sees himself as a cut above the other prisoners.
He reportedly avoids walking in the prison yard “because there are a few prisoners just waiting to be able to beat me up.”
Fritzl is reportedly friendly with a prostitute murderer who he describes as a “helpful, nice guy” because he cooks for him on a regular basis.
But he added: “But I can’t eat too much because I don’t want to get fat.”
He also claims that he receives “hundreds of letters”, mainly from women “who are in love with me”.
Fritzl also says in the book that he wants to “spend the last few years [of his life] in freedom, of course”, saying that he would like to move back to Amstetten and “perhaps set up a small business there”.
He has recently submitted an application to be transferred to a normal prison.
Fritzl – who changed his name to Mayrhoff six years ago – is reportedly suffering from dementia.
Austrian courts have rejected previous attempts by the jailbird to be moved to a lower-security prison.
The Ananova page is created by and dedicated to professional, independent freelance journalists. It is a place for us to showcase our work. When our news is sold to our media partners, we will include the link here.