London, Mar 8 (ANI): Elisabeth Fritzl, the Austrian woman whose father locked her in a cellar for more than two decades and had seven children by her, will tell a court next week that she "tried to please him" in a bid to protect her kids from his abuse, it has emerged.
In filmed testimony, the 43-year-old will describe being assaulted by Josef Fritzl for the first time at the age of 11, when she defended herself against rape by "kicking and screaming", says sources close to investigation.
Josef, 74, who goes on trial next week for murder, incest, unlawful imprisonment and "enslavement", is confident that he could serve fewer than 10 years in prison for his crimes.
Fritzl held Elisabeth as a sex slave for 24 years in a warren of windowless, soundproofed rooms, and forced her to write a letter claiming she had run away to a cult.
"He is not a monster. He loved his daughter in his own way," The Times quoted Rudolf Mayer, Fritzl's lawyer, as saying last week.
Fritzl maintains that their sexual relationship was "consensual" - even though Elisabeth has described being chained to a wall while he raped her.
Elisabeth claims in her testimony that he also physically hurt her, without wanting to specify how.
Fritzl has expressed no remorse beyond accepting that he is "not normal".
Of the six surviving children Fritzl had with Elisabeth, three were raised in the family home. The others were confined to the cellar for their whole lives, not seeing the light of day until they were discovered and released by police in April 2008.
The case first came to light after 19-year-old Kerstin, one of the children fathered by Fritzl and kept underground, became seriously ill and was taken to hospital.
A psychiatrist's report last autumn judged that he was mentally fit to stand trial. (ANI)