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Austria: woman survives abduction, convinces man to free her

Posted at 12:00 AM, Jul 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-26 03:00:35-04

BERLIN (AP) — Austrian police say a 27-year-old woman has survived a kidnapping that included first being hit with a car by a 33-year-old man, being tied up with duct tape and then taken to a house where she was held for hours.

Graz police spokesman Fritz Grundnig said Thursday the woman, identified as triathlon athlete Nathalie Birli, was on her way to exercise Tuesday in Kumberg in southern Austria when she was abducted.

Birli told local daily Krone that after the attacker blindfolded her, he made her drink alcohol, tried to suffocate her and forced her in a bathtub with cold water. However, she said she eventually managed to gain his trust and convinced him to take her back home.

The attacker was arrested Wednesday.