Kidnap girl refuses to stay with her parents

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The Austrian teenager kidnapped and held prisoner for eight years before escaping last week has insisted that she be separated from her parents and is at a secret location, police in Vienna said yesterday.

Natascha Kampusch, 18, was found in the city on Wednesday after fleeing her abductor. She had been held in a sealed car inspection pit beneath his garage for eight years after she was snatched in 1998, aged 10.

Wolfgang Priklopil, 44, her abductor, committed suicide by throwing himself under a train shortly after she escaped.

Police said yesterday that Ms Kampusch was seriously traumatised and had asked to be separated from her parents, Brigitta Sirny and Ludwig Koch, with whom she was briefly reunited last week.

A spokesman said police were "not banning her from seeing her parents, she is an adult capable of making decisions for herself".

Her parents complained bitterly about being removed from their daughter yesterday: "Why am I not allowed to see my child?" asked Ms Sirny in Vienna's Kurier newspaper.

Police said they were almost certain Ms Kampusch had been sexually abused by her captor. They revealed she wept uncontrollably when she was told Priklopil, the man she had to call "master", was dead.