His story shocked the whole world. Abducted on March 2, 1998 at the age of 10, Natascha Kampusch was sequestered for eight long years in a Strasshof house in Austria. Physically and psychologically abused by her captor, an outsider named Wolfgang Přiklopil, the young Austrian lived 3,096 days of ordeal until her unexpected escape on August 23, 2006. However, Natascha Kampusch never received any compensation for these eight years in hell.
It’s not for lack of asking. In February 2011, four and a half years after his escape, the victim of Wolfgang Přiklopil filed a compensation claim with the Austrian Interior Ministry, claiming that the authorities had been negligent when investigating his disappearance. . Indeed, from March 1998, the home of Wolfgang Přiklopil had indeed been visited by the investigators, the latter having a vehicle similar to that used during the kidnapping. The police then designated the Austrian as the probable perpetrator of the kidnapping, but the document attesting to it had never been exploited. For this serious failure to investigate, Natascha Kampusch claimed 323 euros in compensation per day, or just over 1 million euros in damages.
“She had hoped that the ministry would be ready to make a symbolic gesture”
Nevertheless, the Ministry of the Interior has always refused his request, considering that the police had no “founded suspicions” against Wolfgang Přiklopil at the time. A decision considered predictable but unfair for the Kampusch camp. “This refusal is not unexpected, but she had hoped that the Ministry of the Interior would be ready at least to make a symbolic gesture of compensation, in view of the numerous negligence and errors in the investigation”, said Mr. Gerald Ganzger, the victim’s attorney. Since then, the young woman has rebuilt herself. In particular, she began training in goldsmithing and released, in the fall of 2017, a first jewelry collection.
Natascha Kampusch © WALTER