A man accused of raping a 23-year-old woman on an underground line during rush hour in the Austrian capital has been arrested in Graz, Styria.
The 25-year-old man from Vorarlberg was recognised at a tram stop by an eyewitness and then arrested and detained in Graz.
The young woman boarded the train at the underground U6 stop Alterlaa in the direction of Floridsdorf at 6pm on Monday (17 December). A man followed her onto the train and sat down in the empty seat opposite her, despite the carriage being empty. He then suddenly punched her in the face.
According to police the man then proceeded to strangle the woman for four minutes before dragging her to the back of the carriage and raping her. Although it was rush hour the man was alone with the woman in the carriage for three stations. He fled the carriage when people began to board at the stop Philadelphiabrücke. The victim was left with strangulation marks and facial injuries and has been hospitalised to receive psychological treatment.
Police were able to later identify the man using CCTV footage recorded by the transport network operator Wiener Linien. Officers then investigated the city’s homeless scene and were quick to spot their suspect from the familiar faces on the CCTV images. It has not been ruled out that the man may have committed other criminal offences prior to the rape of the 23-year-old on the underground.
The man was later arrested at a tram stop at Jakominiplatz in Graz in the early hours of Wednesday morning (19 December). He was detained in Graz and will be transferred to Vienna today. The man has not yet been questioned.