Police said the men, both Bosnian citizens, rang the doorbell of the house in Götzis at around 6.45pm, wearing balaclavas. When the girl’s mother opened the door they pushed their way into the house and tied her up and gagged her with gaffer tape. The 13-year-old was upstairs but she heard her mother shouting and quickly called the police - and then hid in a walk-in closet.
One of the men began to search the house for valuables but didn’t realise that the girl was hiding in one of the bedrooms.
Meanwhile the girl’s mother was able to free herself and managed to escape out the front door. She was met by a police unit which had surrounded the house. Police made contact with the 13-year-old girl, and helped her climb out of the bedroom window using a ladder.
Armed police then searched the house and found the two men hiding in the attic. They were arrested at around 8.15pm.
Police said that one of the men, who is not a resident of Austria, arrived in the country two weeks ago. It appears that the two Bosnians, aged 29 and 33, had already selected the house as a target. One of the Bosnians is an Austrian resident, and works for a parcel delivery company. He had delivered parcels from the owner of the house to his business address. The men assumed that the family had money, and possibly a safe inside the house.
Luckily the woman and her daughter did not suffer any serious injuries, and were cared for by a specially trained team of counsellors on Wednesday night.