Josef Fritzl: who is convicted rapist, when did he go to prison and could he be let out in a year?

Rapist Josef Fritzl, who was sentenced to life in prison without parole for 15 years has been in psychiatric detention

<p>Josef Fritzl kept his daughter imprisoned and repeatedly raped her,. </p>

Josef Fritzl kept his daughter imprisoned and repeatedly raped her,.

A man who kept his daughter imprisoned for more than 20 years raping her thousands of times should be moved from psychiatric detention to a normal prison, a court has ruled.

Josef Fritzl, who is now 87, fathered seven of his daughter’s children - notoriously selected some of them to live with him, while leaving others with their mother in her basement prison.

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He is eligible for parole next year.

But when did he go to prison and could he actually be released? Here’s what you need to know.

Josef Fritzl.

Who is Josef Fritzl?

Fritzl lived in Amstetten in Austria with his wife Rosemarie and his children, including his daughter Elisabeth who was born in 1966.

On 28 August, 1984, he lured Elisabeth to the basement of their home. At the time she was 18 years old and Fritzl had told her he needed help with a door - however it was to become her prison for the next 24 years.

Fritzl rendered her unconscious with ether and locked her in. He had actually been working on turning the basement area into a prison cell for some time.

Rosemarie filed a missing person’s report, however Fritzl forced his daughter to write a letter which he gave to police, saying she was staying with a friend and warning her parents not to look for her. Fritzl told police she had likely joined a cult.

Elisabeth gave birth to seven children, one of who died shortly after birth. Fritzl took three of the children as infants to live in the house with him and his wife and told people his grandchildren had appeared on his doorstep.

In 2008 his heinous crimes came to light when Elisabeth told police she had been held captive after Fritzl agreed to let her go to the hospital where her oldest daughter was receiving medical treatment. By then the authorities had become suspicious of Fritzl’s story about the cult.

His daughter has not had any contact with him since he was jailed and lives under a new alias.

A hidden bathroom the house and hiding place, where Fritzl imprisoned his daughter for 24 years.

When did he go to jail?

He was sentenced in 2009 to life imprisonment for incest, rape, coercion, false imprisonment, enslavement and for the negligent homicide of one of his infant sons. He was told there would be no possibilty of parole for 15 years.

Will he be released?

He is eligible for release in 2023 - however that is thought to be unlikely.

If he were to be released it would be that he would have served less time than he held his daughter captive.

A three-judge state court panel ruled that he should now be moved from psychiatric detention on the basis of a new assessment, court spokesman Ferdinand Schuster told the Austria Press Agency on Wednesday.

The panel at the state court in Krems set a 10-year probation period and other conditions.

Prosecutors appealed, sending the case to a higher court in Vienna.

Fritzl, who is reportedly suffering from dementia, will remain in a psychiatric facility while that court considers the appeal.

A previous decision to move him to a normal prison, based on a psychiatric assessment that he no longer posed a danger, was issued in Krems in September and overturned on appeal.

The higher court sent the case back to Krems in November, arguing that the state court provided insufficient reasoning for its decision.

The Krems court is legally obliged to review regularly whether holding Fritzl in a psychiatric facility remains justified.