'German Fritzl' hides his face as he appears in court for 'raping his daughter 500 times and fathering her three children'
28th November 2011
A man has gone on trial in Germany charged with raping his daughter over 500 times and fathering three children with her.
A court today heard how the defendant - known only as Adolf B - subjected his family to a reign of terror lasting over 30 years.
The 69-year-old is accused of brutalising his wife and children, stunning them into a long-term conspiracy of silence.
He has been described in the German media as the 'Josef Fritzl of Germany'.
Like Fritzl, who caged his daughter up beneath his Austrian home in a DIY dungeon, Adolf B admitted incest. But he claimed it was always 'consensual sex'.
His daughter, now 46, told police and social workers that her father started raping her when she was about 12 years old, and continued for the next 34 years.
That is a decade longer than the ordeal endured by Elisabeth Fritzl in the cellar where she gave birth to seven children, six of whom survived.
The German woman lived in the family home along with her mother and siblings in Willmersbach, a village near Nuremberg.
She spoke of constant beatings, with all members of the family subjected to a routing of aggression and fear.
A prosecutor told the the Nuremberg-Fürth regional court: 'She had three sons by her father, one of whom died as a baby, another of whom died recently, while the third survived.'
Authorities only uncovered the case after the woman was convicted of blackmailing the wife of a doctor she blamed for the disability of one of her sons.
She was assigned a parole officer who won her trust and eventually heard her story.
The accused, who has a foot injury, hid his face from cameras he was taken into court in a wheelchair this morning.
His lawyer said Adolf B could not believe that his daughter was accusing him of rape as 'he always saw the sex between them as consensual'.
The state prosecutor is only charging him with rapes from the last 20 years, since the statute of limitations has expired for earlier offences.
Even if he is acquitted of the rape charges, incest is a criminal offence in Germany punishable by a prison sentence or a fine.
The trial is expected to last six days and call 24 witnesses and three experts, with the daughter of the accused appearing as the plaintiff and chief witness against him.