Austrian incest father charged with murder, rape, slavery

VIENNA, Austria (AP) -- Authorities in Austria have filed murder charges against the man accused of imprisoning his daughter for 24 years, and fathering her seven children.

Prosecutors contend that one of the children, who died in infancy, might have survived if the baby had gotten medical treatment. They say Josef Fritzl recognized the baby's "life-threatening situation," but "deliberately decided not to intervene."

The 73-year-old Fritzl also has been charged with rape, incest, false imprisonment and slavery in a 27-page indictment.

Investigators say Fritzl confessed to imprisoning and repeatedly raping his daughter. She and three of the children were kept in a windowless cellar Fritzl built beneath his home. They say Fritzl told them he tossed the body of the dead infant into a furnace in 1996.

The retired electrician is expected to go on trial early next year. Prosecutors say a psychiatric evaluation has determined he's mentally competent to stand trial.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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