KOBLENZ, Germany -- A German court on Tuesday convicted a man who fathered eight children with his stepdaughter of scores of counts of sexual abuse and sentenced him to 14 years, 6 months in prison.
The court found 48-year-old defendant, identified only as Detlef S., guilty of 162 counts of sexually abusing his children and forcing his daughter and stepdaughter into prostitution between 1987 and 2010.
He has confessed to the charges.
Detlef S., whose last name was withheld because of German privacy laws, first began molesting his daughter when she was nine, and after her 12th birthday party he regularly sexually assaulted her, the DAPD news agency reported.
Detlef S. had already been abusing his twin stepchildren, who are now 28. He started in 1987 when they were only four years old, and continued until 2010.
DNA samples confirmed Detlef S., a truck driver who lived in Fluterschen near Bonn, fathered seven of his stepdaughter's children. An eighth child passed away before DNA tests could be done, but he later admitted to fathering all eight children.
Shortly before the court announced the verdict, stepson Bjoern B., a co-plaintiff in the trial, told reporters that "Today is the day of truth, the day of justice."
"We have waited 13 years for this day," Bjoern B. said of himself and his siblings who were also abused by Detlef S.
Germany's Bild newspaper has called the suspect the "German Fritzl" – a reference to Europe's most infamous case of incest. Austrian Josef Fritzl was found guilty in 2009 of locking his daughter in a dungeon for 24 years and fathering seven children with her. He is serving a life sentence.