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Children's-Home Worker Faces Investigation into Abuse

Prosecutors in Yekaterinburg have opened an investigation against an orderly, who is suspected of abusing children at a home for those with developmental disabilities.

In a video posted online by local news website, E1.Ru, young residents said the orderly beat them and forced them to engage in sex acts while he watched.

One boy said the orderly "forces us into rape," adding "we don't want to do it, he just beats us, that's all. He beats us and beats us."

"He even kicked us with his legs in our heads," the resident said.

The regional Investigative Committee branch said in a statement on Sunday that it had opened a criminal investigation on charges of abusing minors. The charge carries a sentence of up to seven years in prison.

Investigators "are thoroughly checking all the evidence, without exception," the statement said.

The children's home houses young people aged four to 18 with developmental disabilities. Some are orphaned, while others have parents who are still alive, E1.Ru reported.

The orderly is a 21-year-old former resident of the same children's home, the report said.

The story broke after a social worker who volunteered at the boarding school alerted local media.

"We were unlikely to get the boys to talk, to persuade them to go to the police and say how they were beaten and forced to rape each other," the social worker, identified only by her first name Gulnar, told E1.

"Firstly, the boys would simply be ashamed to tell about this to us, young women," she said. "And secondly, they are afraid of [the orderly]."

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