The Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs is aware of the news related to the case and is seeking further information from the Swiss authorities investigating the matter.

- We do not comment on individual cases and for privacy reasons we will not share more information about this case, it was stated by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' communications emergency service to IS on Tuesday evening.

An 80-year-old high-ranking Catholic priest who held a Finnish woman captive was released on Monday.

According to the law, it is no longer necessary to keep him in custody, inter alia because of his advanced age.

The priest is suspected of at least deprivation of liberty, coercion, abandonment, and slight assault.

The priest is suspected of holding a Finnish 48-year-old woman hostage in his apartment for up to 12 years in Lugano, southern Switzerland.

The woman was found on Friday last week as police searched the apartment.

The woman is now recovering in a safe place in the care of the authorities.

According to local media, the priest had apparently introduced the woman through Internet theology courses.

According to some media reports, the woman would have come to work for the priest as a housekeeper.

The woman arrived in Lugano 12 years ago when a priest moved into her current apartment, located in a house next to San Lorenzo Cathedral.

The apartment is owned by the Diocese of Lugano.

According to Il Caffè, the woman rarely went outside the apartment.

Sometimes he had been seen at a Catholic Mass.

There is no information about the quality of the relationship between a woman and a Catholic priest.

To those who inquired about the woman, the priest had claimed that he was a visiting cousin.

According to the authorities, the woman does not have a valid residence permit in Switzerland.

  • Read more: In Switzerland, an 80-year-old priest is suspected of kidnapping a Finnish woman

The priest suspected of the crimes still works at the Theological Faculty of the Papal University in Lugano.

He has also taught at the Universities of Freiburg and Rome.

The theologian was a respected lecturer at ecclesiastical conferences.

According to the Swiss magazine Blick, no one in the city knew about the woman in prison as a priest.

The magazine uses the priest's name Don Armando.

- Don Armando left the house every morning at seven.

He first went to the cathedral for the fair and drove his car to the office faculty, Suntio told Blick.

It never occurred to him that a priest would hold a woman hostage at home.

- I can't even imagine that.

Don Armando is just a small, slender old man.

Only in recent weeks had the priest's behavior changed.

He refused to let the electric company’s repairers into the apartment, even though its electrical installations had to be new.

In the end, the electricity company had to cut off the electricity from the apartment for safety reasons and notified the authorities.

Police arrived to search the apartment on Friday.

They found it full of stuff and rubbish, in the middle of which a Finnish woman lay “in a dirty and neglected state”.

Postal parcels were stacked in the corridors.

Several of the still unopened packages were an online clothing store from Zalando.

The priest's office in the faculty was examined and computers and documents were seized from there.

After finding the woman, Bishop Valerio Lazzeri of Lugano also visited the apartment with police investigators, says La Regione.

According to the magazine, the mental state of a Finnish woman is assessed.