German couple who sold son to paedophiles jailed for 12 years

The couple are seen with their lawyers

The couple are seen with their lawyers

A court in Friburg, southern Germany, has jailed a woman and her spouse for selling her son to paedophiles on the dark net for sex. Several other men have already been convicted in separate trials.

The Freiburg court also jailed her partner, the boy's stepfather, for 12 years.

A Spanish national received a 10-year prison sentence on Monday after admitting that he had raped the boy on at least 15 occasions and had paid the mother and her partner more than 10 000 euros.

The case which horrified Germany came to light following an anonymous tip last September, and led to the arrest of eight people who were charged with belonging to an online paedophile ring.

The woman's 39-year-old male partner was handed a 12-year prison term followed by "preventive detention", which could delay his release on the grounds that he poses a danger to the public. Among them: In March 2017 the boy was removed from the home after it was found he was living with Christian, who as a convicted pedophile could not have contact with children; the courts didn't speak with the boy but rather sided with his mother and returned him.

The couple also sexually abused a three-year-old girl in 2015.

The two were accused of repeatedly abusing and raping the 10-year-old boy.

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In the following months, the court said, the woman organized assaults on a 2-year-old girl she occasionally looked after.

The couple distributed videos of the sexual abuse across the dark net, selling it for large sums of money.

The case has shocked German society - and local authorities have been accused of failing to protect the boy, who now lives with a foster family.

The verdict against the mother and stepfather in the case, which police have called one of the most atrocious they have investigated, is expected on Tuesday.

The judge, Stefan Bürgelin, said the child's mother started abusing her child after her partner, Christian L, threatened to leave her.

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