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Fritzl says remorse prompts guilty pleas

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Fritzl says remorse prompts guilty pleas

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Austrian Josef Fritzl, accused of imprisoning his own daughter and fathering seven children with her, has changed his pleas to guilty on all charges.

The 73-year-old Fritzl began his trial, pleading guilty to incest and partially guilty to rape. But he initially denied charges carrying the highest jail sentences, including enslaving his daughter in an underground cellar and murdering one of their children soon after its birth. He failed to take the newborn to a doctor when he had difficulty breathing. Fritzl told the court he changed his plea because his daughter Elizabeth’s videotaped testimony yesterday made him realise for the first time how cruel he had been. The guilty pleas throw the progress of the court case up into the air. A sentence is expected to be passed on Thursday afternoon. A psychiatrist has given evidence Fritzl is likely to be a repeat offender and should be committed to a psychiatric institution.