Hearing held on decades-old child sex abuse allegations

Feb. 26, 2014 at 8:52 AM

SYDNEY, Feb. 26 (UPI) -- A lawyer assisting a child sex abuse commission said girls as young as 10 were drugged, raped and beaten at two state-run homes in Australia.

The alleged abuse took place between 1950 and 1974 at the Parramatta Girls Training School in Sydney and the Hay Institution for Girls in the Riverina region, the Australian Broadcasting Corp. reported Wednesday.

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse held a public hearing Wednesday about the allegations.

Caroline Spruce, a lawyer assisting the commission, said some of the girls were sexually abused by officers at the homes while others were abused by older girls.

"Some girls were sexually abused in the shower room and others in the offices of the superintendent or deputy superintendent of the institutions," she said. "The evidence will also disclose that some girls were forced to take a drug, Largactil."

Largactil is largely used to treat depression and behavioral problems, but in this instance was used to subdue girls before they were abused, Spruce said.

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