Oscar-nominated actress Samantha Morton says she was sexually abused as teenager in care

Star moved to reveal troubled past following Rotherham sex abuse scandal

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The Independent Online

Two-time Oscar-nominated actress Samantha Morton has said she was sexually abused while in care as a teenager.

The mother-of-three, who won her first Oscar nod for her turn in Woody Allen’s Sweet and Low Down and starred alongside Tom Cruise in Minority Report, spoke of her troubled past in an open and frank interview with The Guardian.

The 37-year-old claimed that aged 13 she was sexually abused by two residential care workers at Red Tiles, a council-run children’s home in her home-town of Nottingham.

Morton said she was moved to speak out following revelations in a report published last month that more than 1,400 young people were abused over a 16-year period in Rotherham.

“I was doing ok,” she told interviewer Simon Hattenstone, “and then suddenly the Rotherham thing comes up.”

She said: “I wouldn't say that I live in a constant state of illness, but I do think that when you have been sexually or physically abused, it is a life sentence. It does stay with you for ever.

“Trauma is like grief. You can be fine for four or five years, then it comes back and hits you like it happened the day before.”

The Hollywood movie star, who has won Bafta and Golden Globe awards, spent most of her childhood in foster or care homes.

She said her father spent time in prison and her mother had a breakdown struggling to cope looking after nine children, while her stepfather was jailed for attempted murder.

At the age of 11 she was in permanent care at Red Tiles. It was here she alleges she was groomed by her abusers who would give her extra portions of food and bring her treats.

It culminated in them sexually abusing her, first as individuals, and then one night both together, she told the newspaper.

Despite reporting them to the police, she said her abusers were never prosecuted. Nottingham Police has claimed it has no record of a complaint from the star.

Morton said her motive to finally reveal her past was that she didn’t want the Rotherham scandal to be written off as one bad example, but to show that abuse was commonplace.

An investigation into abuse at a children’s care home in Nottingham has since been widened to include 12 other establishments, including Red Tiles.

A spokesman for Nottinghamshire County Council, which was responsible for running the home at the time said, it was hoping to speak with the actress about the allegations.

A government inquiry has also been launched into historic organised sexual abuse of children at a wide range of institutions over many years.