Former foster parents convicted of abuse and assault

A couple who were formerly foster parents for Cambridgeshire
council have been convicted of abusing and assaulting young people
in their care.

Jeff and Brenda Tanner from Peterborough, who denied committing
more than 20 offences, were told by a judge at King’s Lynn crown
court that they were guilty of “cruelty” and “depravity”.

One senior detective described the Tanners’ behaviour as “one of
the most despicable things you can imagine”.

Two of the victims were children at the time of the offences in
the 1980s. They both had special needs, and a third victim was an
adult with special needs.

Judge Isobel Plumstead said Jeff Tanner was the principal abuser
and warned him he faced a long prison sentence. His wife also faces
a prison sentence,

The couple were convicted in April, but the jury’s verdict was
not announced until this week for legal reasons. They will be
sentenced next month.

A Cambridgeshire council statement said the authority had always
acknowledged that services were under “severe pressure” in the late
1980s and early 1990s. But major improvements had taken place since
a change of senior management in 1998, the statement read.



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