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Austrian Police Investigate Possible Ties Between Incestous Father and 1986 Murder


Austrian police say they are investigating possible links between the unsolved 1986 murder of a woman outside Salzburg and a man who imprisoned his daughter for 24 years and fathered seven children with her.

Officials say police in the Salzburg area have provided information to their colleagues outside Vienna about the unsolved murder of a 17-year-old girl whose body was found on the edge of a lake 22 years ago.

They say they seek to determine if 73-year-old Josef Fritzl was at a house his family owned in the area at the time of the murder.

Police arrested Fritzl Saturday after determining that he had kept his daughter, Elisabeth, now 42, and three children locked in windowless rooms in the basement of his home in the small town of Amstetten, west of Vienna.

Fritzl had taken three of Elisabeth's children upstairs to live with him and his wife. Fritzl says a seventh child died in infancy and that he burned its body in a furnace.

The fate of Elisabeth came to light when one of the children, a 19-year-old girl, became ill and was taken to a hospital on April 19. She is in critical condition after suffering a lack of oxygen. Police say DNA tests confirm that Fritzl fathered Elisabeth's six surviving children.

A court has ordered Fritzl held in custody while he is investigated on charges of rape, incest and coercion.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.