VIENNA -- The Austrian teenager held in an underground cell for more than eight years insisted yesterday that she didn't miss out on much in captivity and was even spared some temptations and torments of adolescence, such as smoking, drinking, and dealing with ``bad friends."
On her fifth full day of freedom, 18-year-old Natascha Kampusch broke her silence in a statement that appeared to lend credence to the theory she may have suffered from ``Stockholm Syndrome," where victims cope by identifying with their captors.
Kampusch, who was 10 when she was snatched off a street on her way to school and imprisoned in a cramped, windowless cell, described what she went through at the hands of Wolfgang Priklopil, 44, who killed himself within hours of her escape by throwing himself beneath a commuter train.
Kampusch refused to discuss allegations of abuse but indicated that Priklopil at times treated her well, but at other times very badly.
``I don't want to, and won't, answer any questions about intimate or personal details," she said. ``I will punish breaches of personal boundaries, whoever crosses voyeuristic boundaries. Whoever tries that better prepare themselves for something."
She described the man who enslaved her as ``a part of my life," adding ``that's why I also mourn for him in a certain way."
Kampusch also said she refused to comply with Priklopil's requests to call him ``master."
``He was not my master. I was just as strong," she said in the statement, read to reporters by a psychologist.
Police said that they have only just begun to question Kampusch about her March 1998 abduction and many questions remain unanswered about the case, which until her escape last Wednesday was one of Austria's greatest unsolved criminal mysteries.
Kampusch said she slipped to safety while Priklopil was busy with a cellphone call and she was cleaning his car in the garden with a vacuum cleaner. She has been at an undisclosed location since.
At the time of her escape, she weighed just 92.5 pounds -- exactly her weight when she vanished as a freckle-faced 10-year-old, the news magazine Profil reported.