WERAN 30/94 – Austria: The alleged torture and ill-treatment of Wolfgang Purtscheller

Index Number: EUR 13/004/1994

On the evening of 22 September 1994, journalist and author Wolfgang Purtscheller was reportedly ill-treated by police when he sought to intervene as two plainclothes police were attempting to arrest a black African asylum-seeker in the foyer of the theatre he was attending. He and the plainclothes police argued until about 10 uniformed officers stormed into the building and proceeded physically to ill-treat him there and outside the theatre. He was taken to a nearby police station where he was held until about 3am the next morning. He was not allowed to see his lawyer and was given an apparently cursory medical examination. Wolfgang Purtscheller has reported extensively on right-wing extremism in Austria. He has submitted complaints about his treatment by the police. He is himself accused of assaulting officers and of resisting state authority. AI is seeking more information about the case.

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