Source: Jay Jackson, Big News Network
BATHURST, Central West, NSW, Australia – A woman embroiled in a serial inquest case will live in Bathurst in the NSW Central West, after being released on bail.
The 52-year old woman whose pseudonym is Betty Colt, is the mother of thirteen children. She is also one of the heads of a family of 38 which was found living in squalid conditions comprising of sheds, tents and caravans, on a remote property near Yass in the NSW Southern Tablelands in 2012.
Court documents allege many of the family members were having sex with each other, and were encouraging their children to have sex. Adults were also having sex with children.
Twelve children were seized from the property by authorities amidst the accusations and inspections, which revealed not only the extent of the sexual behaviour but also the profound neglect of the children, some of whom didn’t know how to use a toothbrush or toilet paper.
Colt, a New Zealander by birth, who is facing five charges of perjury for lying about who the fathers of her children are, has been in detention for the past 14 months.
Supreme Court Justice Desmond Fagan has accepted conditons for her bail, including that she reside with a relative in Bathurst.
In his ruling, the judge detailed the extent of the allegations which another eight Colt family members are facing charges over. Those members were arrested in April last year.
“It is alleged over a protracted period of time incestuous relations occurred and children were born of those relationships,” Justice Fagan said.
“It is alleged that on a particular rural property where a large number of members of the family resided various adults engaged in encouraging children who were related to each other to engage in sexual acts.”
The judge referred to allegations involving family members having sexual relations with children they were related to, and “encouraging and forcing children to have sexual relations with each other.”
Ten of the 12 children taken into care by the state had parents that were related to each other.
Betty Colt’s son has been charged with two counts of incest with a person under 16, while her brother has been charged with four counts of sexual intercourse with a person under 10, and one count of sexural intercourse with an 18-year old woman without consent.
All the cases including Betty Colt’s will be heard concurrently, commencing in February next year. The trial is expected to take three months.
In the meantime Colt, whose bail was opposed by the prosecutor who claimed she was a flight risk, will be required to report to Bathurst Police on a daily basis until the trial.
The eight other family members, Raylene, Betty and Rupert Colt who were arrested in South Australia; Ronda, Cliff and Frank Colt who were arrested in Western Australia and extradited to NSW; and Martha and Charlie Colt, who were arrested in the NSW town of Griffith, are either in custody or on bail.
All the names of the accused in court documents have been changed to pseudonyms to protect the identity of the victims.