Woman Kidnapped As Child Details 8-Year Ordeal With Man Who 'Admired Adolf Hitler'

An Austrian woman who was kidnapped as a child and held in a secret cellar for eight years has revealed further details about her traumatic time in captivity.

Natascha Kampusch, who is now 33, described her experience of being kept against her will after she was snatched on the way to school by Wolfgang Priklopil in March 1998 when she was only 10.

Priklopil kept her in a cell under his garage at his home near Vienna. She managed to escape on August 23, 2006, while her captor was distracted by a phone call, in a story that made global headlines. Priklopil, who was 44, killed himself hours later by throwing himself under a train.

Nearly 15 years after she managed to flee Priklopil's house, she told Austrian broadcaster ORF about her ordeal in an interview broadcast on Tuesday.

She said that her captor forced her to do heavy work, gave her very little to eat, few clothes, and "humiliated me...and shaved my head," according to a translation of her comments carried by media outlets.

"He admired Adolf Hitler and wanted me to feel like the Nazi victims," she told the network in a program broadcast this week which also showed prior interviews with her, the first of which had aired in September 2006.

At one point in her captivity, Kampusch weighed only 83 pounds, and she kept a record of her experiences by using toilet paper to keep a diary which she managed to hide in a box from Priklopil.

She wrote a book about her experiences, called 3,096 Days, which was published in September 2010 and adapted into a film of the same name three years later.

In one excerpt, Kampusch described how she suffered dozens of blows to the face on one occasion.

In August 2016, a decade on from her escape, she released a second book called 10 Years of Freedom.

Now a successful author and jewelry designer, local authorities gave her the house as financial compensation for her ordeal. She does not live at the property but does check up on it regularly.

In a previous interview, she said that she felt sorry for her captor whom she described as a "poor soul."

However, she said that since her second book, she had been criticized because she did not resemble a victim.

"People probably thought that I was missing an eye or something," she told ORF, "that I was just crying all day and under the influence of medication, many might have preferred that as an image of a victim."

Natascha Kampusch
Natascha Kampusch during the Markus Lanz Talkshow on October 2, 2019 in Hamburg, Germany. Kidnapped and held captive for a decade, she has spoken about how her captor admired Adolf Hitler. Getty