Australia incest case: Deformed children found in remote farming community after generations of inbreeding

Hardly any were capable of intelligible speech and many were deaf and blind

The filthy and severely deformed offspring of a horrifying incest cult whose members bred together for generations have been discovered in a remote farming community in Australia.

Apparently unknown to the 2,000 people with whom they shared their fertile valley township in New South Wales, at least 40 members of the reclusive Colt family raised four generations of inbred children in one of the country’s worst ever cases of child abuse.

According to the Sydney Daily Telegraph - which published details of New South Wales Children’s Court’s judgement on the family - the case only came to light when authorities were informed that children living in a network of huts in the valley did not attend school.

The subsequent New South Wales Police and Community Services investigation found deformed and disabled children living in squalor; unable to take care of themselves and lacking knowledge of basic hygiene, such as how to clean their teeth or use toilet paper.

Many of the children were suffering from severe health problems brought on by inbreeding, with a number diagnosed with homozygosity deformations – mutations caused by inheriting identical genes from both parents.

Hardly any were capable of intelligible speech, many were deaf and/or blind, and those that could understand what investigators were saying were painfully shy due to spending their entire lives without communicating with anyone other their immediate family members.

The name of the valley in which the family lived has been kept secret to avoid identifying the victims of child abuse, and the members have been given pseudonyms for the same reason. The surname Colt is not the real family name.

Despite this, New South Wales Children’s Court is understood to have released details of the case as it felt the world had to hear about one of Australia’s worst ever instances of incest.

The family is believed to trace back to the children’s great-grandparents, who were brother and sister. The incestuous siblings had a number of children, with these children raising another generation children of offspring among themselves. This third generation also chose to inbreed, giving birth to the children recently found living in squalor in the valley.

In total, at least 40 inbred people were believed to have been born in the network of huts – which were not served with any electricity or running water.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Tradewind Recruitment: PMLD Teacher

Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: PMLD Teacher A specialist primary school i...

Recruitment Genius: Online Media Sales Trainee

£15000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Now our rapidly expanding and A...

Recruitment Genius: Public House Manager / Management Couples

£15000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you passionate about great ...

Recruitment Genius: Production Planner

£20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Day In a Page

The super-rich now live in their own Elysium - they breathe better air, and eat better food, when they're not making beans on toast for their kids

The super-rich now live in their own Elysium

They breathe better air, eat better food, take better medicine
A generation of dropouts failed by colleges

Dropout generation failed by colleges

£800m a year wasted on students who quit courses before they graduate
Entering civilian life 'can be like going into the jungle' for returning soldiers

Homeless Veterans appeal

Entering civilian life can be like going into the jungle
Sam Taylor-Johnson: Woman on top

Sam Taylor-Johnson: Woman on top

Fifty Shades of Grey director on bringing the hit to the screen
As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch