In an appalling and shocking case heard at Truro Crown Court this week, a couple were jailed for sexually abusing their children.
According to the BBC, whose reporters were at the trial:
The stepmother was found guilty of three indecent assaults on a male, three counts of sexual activity with a child, four counts of offering to supply Class B drugs, one count of engaging in a sexual act in the presence of a child and two charges of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity. She was jailed for twenty one years.
Her husband, their father, admitted a series of sexual abuse charges and was jailed for eighteen years.
The stepmother started having sex with her eleven-year-old male stepson (not named for legal reasons) who started self-harming at twelve and later became addicted to drugs, as the parents also introduced him to cannabis and amphetamines.
The couple had four children from previous relationships. The mother’s three daughters were also targeted, with one daughter finding it extremely difficult to describe the abuse that had been inflicted on her from the age of nine. The judge said the son had been physically and emotionally devastated by his parents.
An NSPCC spokeswoman said: “The fact these child abusers are starting lengthy prison terms is a testament to the bravery of their own children who spoke out about the wicked abuse they had inflicted upon them. Children should be vehemently protected by their parents, but this couple gave no regard to the position of trust they held, abusing their children for their own sexual gratification. This case highlights that all survivors of abuse will be listened to, no matter how much time has passed.”
Any adult concerned about the welfare of a child or young person can call the NSPCC helpline for free and confidential advice on 0808 800 5000 or visit nspcc.org.uk
Children can contact Childline on 0800 1111 or childline.org.uk 24/7, 365 days a year, and speak to a counsellor about a worry or concern they may have.