Eight family members across three states, arrested by police following a six year investigation into suspected historic and ongoing child abuse in New South Wales.
The alleged offenders include a man and woman in the Griffith area who were taken to Griffith Police Station.
The 45-year-old man was charged with six counts of sexual intercourse with a child under 10, four counts of indecent assault, sexual intercourse with a child aged between 10-14, aggravated act of indecency, and common assault.
The investigation involved police in three states from New South Wales to South Australia to Western Australia, reports 9 news.
In the Riverland region of South Australia, a man and two women were arrested and taken to Berri Police Station. A 29-year-old man was charged with a NSW arrest warrant for two counts of incest with a person under the age of 16 years.
The group were remanded in custody to appear at Adelaide Magistrates Court today, where detectives will apply for their extradition to NSW.
In Western Australia, two men and a woman were arrested in the Northam area and taken to Perth Police Station.
A 36-year-old man was charged with a NSW arrest warrant for four counts of sexual intercourse with a child under 10, 2 counts of indecent assault and having sexual intercourse with a child aged between 10-14. A 48-year-old man was charged with a NSW arrest warrant for counts of sexual intercourse with a child under 10.
The investigation dates back to 2012, when detectives from the State Crime Command’s Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad established Strike Force Hermoyne to investigate allegations of incest, child sexual assault, and serious neglect of children.
Anyone with concerns about suspected child abuse or exploitation should call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
The main message from survivors is about the importance of paying attention to children’s behaviour. If children are being sexually abused, there may be physical signs such as bleeding from the vagina or anus (back passage), sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or poor hygiene.
However, signs in a child’s behaviour are more likely.
•significant changes in behaviour, aggressive behaviour or regression (going back) to an earlier stage of development (for example, bedwetting)
•sexual behaviour that is not appropriate to the child’s age
•depression or social withdrawal
•getting into trouble at school (sometimes to avoid going home)
•self-harming behaviours (for example, self-mutilation, suicide attempts or prostitution).
Where to get help
•Child Protection Service – to report child abuse. Contact your local office or the DHS Child Protection Crisis Line on Tel. 131 278
•Police – to report the abuser
•Centres Against Sexual Assault Tel. 1800 806 292 (24 hours) – for support and counselling
•National Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence hotline Tel. 1800 737 732 (24 hours) – for support
•Children are not responsible for sexual abuse.
•Sexual abuse is a crime.
•Children often talk about the abuse a little at a time.
•It is very common for survivors to repress memories of abuse.
•Sexual abuse is experienced by girls and boys. Children cannot stop sexual abuse.
If this has triggered any concerns for you or a loved one please contact Lifeline 13 11 14 or call 000
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