A couple forced their 11-year-old son to join them having sex to try and stop him from being gay. The parents, who have not been named to protect his identity, made him watch them in bed and take part in various acts. His father told police it was because he wanted to keep his son ‘on the straight and narrow’. He and the boy’s stepmother were jailed today, for six years and nine years respectively. Judge Maria Lamb heard that the victim had initially told the police what was happening to him in 1998 but his father lied to detectives and he was not believed.

Years later the victim, now an adult aged in his 30s, complained again to the police and this time the father and the boy’s step-mother were both arrested. The father and step-mother sat in the dock at Reading Crown Court as prosecutor Ruby Silva described to the court how they had begun their sexual assaults when the boy was 11.

Ms Silva read aloud a statement from the father’s initial interview with police, citing how he had claimed the abuse was to ‘keep him on the straight and narrow path,’ following the couple’s irrational fear of their son being gay. Over the course of years during the mid-1990s, the couple now in their sixties, would force the child to watch them have sex as well as perform sexual acts on the child involving oral sex, touching the child’s genitals and forcing him to ‘suck on the step-mother’s nipples,’ in an attempt to educate him about heterosexual relationships.

Defence counsel Timothy Shorter said the father, now of Weymouth, Dorset, did not touch the child himself. ‘He was very much the lesser role and you will note that the victim’s statement reflects that fact,’ said Mr Shorter. The step-mother, of Barnet, Lincolnshire, denied any wrong doing right up until the sentencing. She was convicted of indecent assault of a child, and two counts of indecency with a child.

She was cleared of one count of indecency. Judge Lamb said during sentencing: ‘This was a child who had been neglected by his mother and was particularly vulnerable. ‘The damage that you two have done is unacceptable’. Turning to the step-mother she said: ‘For your own personal sexual gratification, you performed sexual acts on a boy who considered you his mother. ‘This was your warped sense of right and wrong.’ ‘One of the most sickening aspects is how you pointed a finger at wholly innocent people, such as the boy’s birth mother. I have read and re-read the victim’s statement.

He was desperate for affection and you wholly exploited that.’ After the hearing the victim said: ‘It’s been a long process, and I tried before. I tried when I was 16 and obviously I was made out to be a liar. A lot of people will ask ‘why now?’ But it took me that long to convince myself that I had the courage to go through it all again. If my story can reach just one other person, I will be perfectly happy with that.’

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