Elderly couple pleads guilty to 22 counts of abuse against foster children
Published Wednesday, March 16, 2016 5:54PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, March 17, 2016 7:14AM EDT
An elderly couple from Laval is behind bars after pleading guilty to abusing and torturing their foster children.
Five survivors have now come forward, but there may be more.
Jacques Laporte, now 75 and his wife Micheline Laporte Charland, 71, pleaded guilty Wednesday to a total of 22 charges, many of them serious, sexually explicit charges.
One of the survivors is Stephane Brabant, now 39 and a father. When he was a boy, he said he suffered greatly at the hands of his foster parents.
From the ages of 6 to 10, Brabant said his foster father regularly beat him with a belt he called ‘Big Bad John,’ sometimes drawing blood.
“I was beaten with a belt, forced on my knees and flogged until I bled for four years,” he said. “If I made my bed wrong, didn't sweep properly, got bad marks at school, anything.”
The abuse took place in the early 80's in a home in Laval's St. Francois district.
Two sisters, now in their 50's, did not appear in court, but also accused Laporte and his wife of sexually and physically assaulting them on a weekly basis during the 60's and 70's. There were 16 different charges relating to the sisters. They say the abuse began in Montreal when they were nine and six, then continued in Laval and lasted over a decade.
Five years ago, Laporte was also found guilty of drugging and sexually and physically abusing two brothers in their care. He served 30 months in jail.
Because the couple served as foster parents to many children, Laval police suspected there might be other victims; they were correct.
Brabant said he came forward after hearing about the other boys, who have now also laid charges against the wife.
The couple both pleaded guilty to all new charges against them.
Noticeably disturbed by the facts of the case, Judge Gilles Garneau said he could not allow the elderly couple to remain free pending their sentencing, because it would undermine public confidence in the courts.
The Laportes now live in Chertsey. They were handcuffed and placed into detention until their sentencing arguments May 6.
Both in their 70s, there is a strong possibility they will spend much of the remainder of their lives in jail.