VIENNA, Austria – The DNA of an Austrian man who kidnapped a girl on her way to school and held her captive for more than eight years has been passed to Interpol to determine if he committed crimes outside Austria, a police spokesman said Sunday.
"This should clarify whether the offender should be considered for any criminal offenses abroad," police Maj. Gen. Gerhard Lang of the Federal Criminal Investigations Bureau told the Austria Press Agency.
Police spokesman Helmut Greiner, in a follow-up interview, said the data had already been transmitted, adding this was a routine procedure that enabled every lead to be pursued at an international level.
Interpol, with 184 member countries, is the world's largest international police organization and supports law enforcement agencies worldwide.
Wolfgang Priklopil abducted Natascha Kampusch when she was 10, dragging her into a van on her way to school in Vienna on the morning of March 2, 1998.
After being held captive for more than eight years in Priklopil's home in the Vienna suburb of Strasshof, Kampusch escaped Aug. 23 while he was busy with a phone call. Priklopil, 44, committed suicide hours after she fled by throwing himself in front of a commuter train in Vienna.
DNA taken from Priklopil's body and checked against a vast nationwide database have indicated he was not a suspect in any other missing person cases.
Austrian investigators are still piecing together the circumstances surrounding Kampusch's kidnapping and how the now 18-year-old survived her ordeal, which it appears she spent for the most part in a dingy, windowless basement.
Police images show the room contained, among other things, books, clothes, a television, a bed, a toilet and a sink. Investigators say Kampusch also was allowed to listen to the radio and watch some videos, and with the help of a book taught herself how to knit.