Letters Show Austrian 'Horror House' Dad's Daughter Planned to Flee

The Austrian woman held captive and sexually abused by her father for 24 years was planning to move away from her parents' house shortly before she was locked up, according to old letters written by her and published today.

"After the exams ... I'm moving in with my sister and her boyfriend,'' Elisabeth Fritzl, now 42, wrote to a male friend on May 9, 1984, a few months before her father Josef Fritzl locked her up in a windowless cellar from which she emerged only two weeks ago.

The letter, along with two others, was published today by the daily Oesterreich.

In another letter, dated May 29, 1984, she wrote to the same friend: "When you get this letter, it will all be over. I'll give you my new address as soon as I've moved.''

• Click here to see photos of Josef Fritzl and the "House of Horrors."

A few months later, Elisabeth Fritzl was locked up by her father in a cellar of their building where she was repeatedly raped and gave birth to seven children fathered by him, police said.

An Austrian magazine reports that Josef Fritz said he "must have been crazy" to do such a thing, saying he tried to care for his daughter and their children as best he could, often bringing flowers, books and toys to their windowless dungeon.

In a last letter from August 3, 1984, just a few weeks before she vanished, the woman made no mention of moving however, telling her friend only about her hobbies and a drunken night out.

"I like to listen to music and daydream. But if life is only made of dreams, well, I don't know.''

In comments released to the Austrian weekly News by his lawyer, Josef Fritzl, 73, tried to justify his actions.

"She did not obey any rules, she hung around in dodgy bars all night, drank, smoked,'' he said.

"That's why I had to provide, I had to create a place, in which I could keep Elisabeth away from the outside world, by force if I had to.''

The Associated Press contributed to this report.