Family members who tortured a child over a two-year period were sentenced to jail yesterday.
The 10-year-old boy – who has been left with severe facial disfigurement – was beaten, burned and even had his fingers cut by his grandaunt, 44, and her family, reported TODAY.
The court heard that he was hit on his mouth with a hammer last year after he finished some fried rice supposedly for the family.
A few months later, he was again abused - this time for allegedly stealing food and playing with the knobs of the gas stove.
According to TODAY, his grandaunt punished him by splashing hot cooking oil on him. She also used a hot iron and ladle on him, and cut his fingers with a pair of scissors. Her three daughters helped to hold the boy.
On another occasion, his hands were tied with a cable tie and his mouth taped with scotch tape after he was allegedly found stealing food again.
The family’s lawyer said the family had financial woes and that the grandaunt "merely wanted to frighten" the boy.
The boy had moved in with the family when he was four, after his mother was imprisoned.
The victim’s grandaunt – a former cleaner - was jailed five years. Two daughters, aged 20 and 24, were sentenced to 20 months' jail each. Her youngest daughter, 14, was sentenced earlier this year to probation. Her ex-husband will be sentenced next year.