The parents, who have not been named in order to protect the victim’s identity, were sentenced at Reading Crown Court last month for forcing their 11-year-old son to perform sexual acts on them to avoid him ‘becoming gay’. The case bears horrible similarities to one in the US, in which it was found in March that a man had ordered his girlfriend to sexually assault an autistic boy because he thought he could be gay. But in this case both father and step-mother were abusers and it happened repeatedly. During the trial, the court heard how from when the boy was 11, the couple performed various sexual acts on him, including oral sex and touching his genitals, and made him “suck on the step-mother’s nipples” and forced him to watch them having sex, believing it would keep them on a ‘straight and narrow’ way. Judge Maria Lamb was told that the victim, who is now in his 30s, reported the abuse to police in 1998, but his father misled detectives and ensured they didn’t believe his son’s accusations. The step-mother, who now lives in Barnet, Lincolnshire, denied all charges right up until she was sentenced. She was convicted of indecent assault of a child and two counts of indecency with a child, but was cleared of one count of indecency.