To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Josef Fritzl is applying to be released from prison

Josef Fritzl is applying to be released from prison

Josef Fritzl's lawyers are applying for him to be released from prison

Josef Fritzl has applied for early release from prison, his lawyers have confirmed.

For over 20 years, the Austrian criminal kept his young daughter Elisabeth locked away in a soundproofed pit hidden in his home.

During that time, Fritzl repeatedly raped and abused her, fathering seven children as a result.

While one of the children passed away not long after being born, the others were taken upstairs, where they lived with Fritzl and his wife as if nothing had happened.

His wife was oblivious to her husband's horrific crimes, with him telling her their daughter had ran away to join a cult and had dropped her children at their doorstep, apparently being unable to care for them.

The truth of his depraved crimes surfaced in 2008, when one of Elisabeth's daughters, Kerstin, left the home to see a doctor.

After passing a note to medics explaining what was going on, police were informed and Fritzl's dungeon was finally found.

Josef Fritzl is currently serving life in prison.
Handout by APA via Getty Images

He was arrested and eventually sentenced to life in prison, with his sentence being carried out at Stein Prison, the most secure psychiatric prison in Austria.

But now, almost 16 years on since his crimes came to light, Fritzl's lawyers are looking to have him released.

Speaking about her client, who has dementia, Astrid Wagner said that recent psychiatric tests show him to pose no threat to society.

But rather than being moved to a standard prison, she has asked the courts to consider moving him to a care home, where he can live out the remainder of his days.

She told ORF on Monday (15 January) that Fritzl 'has a right to be treated with human dignity', which, she believes is 'only possible in a nursing home and not in a prison'.

While she admitted that he was 'not severely demented', she said he suffered from 'distortions of reality'.

And Wagner said it was clear to her that he felt 'honest, genuine, deeply felt remorse' for what he had done, for having 'destroyed the beautiful life he had by doing something to his family'.

Fritzl hid his face during the trial.
Handout by APA via Getty Images

This comes after it was reported last year that Fritzl had been working on a book with Wagner, titled Die Abgruende des Josef F. translated as The Abysses of Josef F.

Passages quoted in Austrian and German media see Fritzl make a wide range of claims that show he's still unwilling to take accountability of his crimes.

As well as arguing that he's 'a good person' and a 'responsible family man', he also brags about receiving 'hundreds of letters', mostly from women 'who are in love with me'.

Fritzl also expresses that he doesn't understand why his wife Rosemarie - who didn't know about his crimes - left him.

A year earlier, in 2023, Fritzl was denied a similar request to move prisons.

Featured Image Credit: Handout by APA via Getty Images / Netflix

Topics: Crime, World News