Sickening new details have been revealed about the allegations facing the notorious Colt ‘incest’ family.
A court has heard how adults in the family allegedly ‘forced’ the children to have sexual relations with each other.
Accused incest matriarch Betty Colt has been granted bail as she awaits trial.
She has been charged with perverting the course of justice and five counts of making a false statement on oath amounting to perjury.
The 52-year-old woman has been in prison since April 2018 after she, along with seven other relatives, were arrested over allegations of incest at a remote NSW property.
At Ms Colt’s bail hearing, on Wednesday, Judge Desmond Fagan revealed new details about the allegations facing the family.
‘It is alleged over a protracted period of time incestuous sexual relations occurred and children were born of these relationships,’ he said.
‘It is alleged that on a particular rural property, where a large number of members of this family resided, various adults engaged in encouraging children who were related to each other to engage in sexual acts.’
The allegations extend to adult Colts ‘forcing’ children to have sexual relations with each other, the judge said.
Accused incest matriarch Betty Colt (pictured) has been granted bail despite ‘forcing children to have incestuous sex’
Police discovered that the Colt family – a pseudonym given to the family by the court – were living together in filth inside a camp at Boorowa, rural New South Wales
The family have been given court-appointed pseudonyms to protect the children’s identities.
Forty members of the same family were found living in squalor on the property in 2012.
Justice Fagan granted Colt bail in the NSW Supreme Court on Wednesday, after she expressed fears of being bashed if she spent more time behind bars.
She has already spent 14 months in jail and would not be facing a sentence with a non-parole period greater than that if convicted.
‘I can’t justify holding her in prison for what appears to be a longer period than her ultimate penalty,’ Justice Fagan said.
Ms Colt She is accused of lying about the paternity of her children.
‘The Crown case is that she in fact knew that the father of these three children was related to her,’ Justice Fagan said.
Accused incest Betty Colt (pictured outside court in 2014) has been in prison since April 2018 after she, along with seven other relatives, were arrested over allegations of incest
The farm where the family lived was lacking in hygiene and many of the children had difficulties with speech
The crown prosecutor had opposed bail, alleging Colt had made phone calls to a female relative ‘urging that person to withdraw statements made to authorities’ and had refused to acknowledge wrongdoing.
‘All of the evidence of the children goes to the materiality of the lies and this applicant has shown she does not accept the allegations,’ the prosecutor argued on Wednesday.
Police stumbled across the Colt family in 2012 after discovering the rundown camp at Boorowa, in western New South Wales (pictured)
‘She maintains there was no issue with the way that the family were living, with the relationships between the family,’ the prosecutor said.
They added that there was a risk Colt would use other family members as a ‘conduit’ to contact witnesses.
But Justice Fagan said ‘it’s just going to have to be managed’ and imposed strict bail conditions including that she lives at a fixed address, reports daily to police, surrenders any passport and appears in court when required.
She must seek permission to leave NSW and is also banned from communicating with any of her co-accused or prosecution witnesses, including a long list of family members.
The 52-year-old is the fourth Colt to be granted bail ahead of the estimated three-month trial in February 2020.
At least five child witnesses are due to pre-record their evidence in December.
Cliff Colt, 37, is charged with child sexual assault offences and is expected to make his bid for release on Friday.