A man starts abusing his daughter sexually when she is 11. A few years later, he lures her to “a windowless basement” and imprisons her there. He fakes a letter from her that indicates that she has run away from home. Then, for 24 years, he keeps her in that basement, rapes her repeatedly, and has seven children with her. One of them dies after birth. Three are taken to the man’s home, where he pretends that his ‘runaway’ daughter has abandoned them, and are adopted by him and his wife. The oldest two, now aged 18 and 19, and the youngest, aged 5, remain in the basement, where they are denied sunlight, friends, the normal life above the ground. Eventually the oldest daughter falls ill, has to be taken to hospital, and the story unravels from there. You can read about it here.

This reminds me of something Theodore Dalrymple once wrote: “Men commit evil within the scope available to them.” This man’s scope was limited to his own family—but such damage is bone-chilling. I hope they lock him away for the rest of his life—though nothing he faces can equal what he made his daughters go through—but the difficult question here is not what is to be done with him, but what is to be done with us.