Fritzl interviewer reported to police by ministry

A lawyer and a journalist have been reported for “unauthorised communication with a prisoner” after the publication of an interview with incest dad Josef Fritzl.A reporter from German newspaper Bild spoke to the 75-year-old at Stein prison in Krems, Lower Austria, last week. The conversation has been quoted by newspapers all over the world after the bestselling daily published it on its website as well as in print.While the Austrian justice ministry immediately warned that the interview “will have consequences” since it had not been authorised, Bild claimed its reporter did nothing wrong. The Berlin-based newspaper said its writer always made clear he wanted to speak with Fritzl about a book project. The convict reportedly has plans to publish an autobiography.The daily also announced that the reporter was checked upon entering the jail and “handed over various items which are not allowed inside the prison” when being asked to do so.Now the federal justice ministry said that it had reported the journalist and a legal representative of Fritzl to police for illegally communicating with the prisoner. It has not been made clear whether the accused face fines or even jail for their alleged offences.The ministry emphasised last week that Fritzl was generally prohibited to give interviews. The decision is considered as a bid to protect his victims.It said today neither the Bild reporter nor Fritzl’s lawyer, who apparently accompanied him when speaking to the prisoner, were given permission to interview Fritzl by the ministry or jail officials.The justice ministry also said today (Tues) that the journalist’s claims that a female employee of the prison provided them with a permission to speak to Fritzl in the jail’s visitors area were wrong.The ministry revealed visitors records suggest that the reporter lied to prison staff by claiming he was working for Fritzl’s lawyer to meet Fritzl who is allowed to speak with his legal representatives on a regular basis.Fritzl, who was given a life sentence in a trial which took place in St. Pölten in March 2009, said in the interview he was convinced his former wife and his children were kept from visiting him by officials.The pervert, who kept his daughter Elisabeth as a personal sex slave for 24 years in a cellar dungeon, also said he was convinced his family still loved him.Meanwhile, bankruptcy trustees handling Fritzl’s estate said the former residence of the family in Amstetten might be demolished soon after the liquidator failed to find an investor.They explained negotiations with town hall officials currently focus on trying to avoid any nuisance to neighbours when tearing down the building as they have been pestered by journalists knocking on their doors trying to get information about Fritzl ever since his incest crimes emerged in April 2008.