A couple who inflicted their four-year-old disabled daughter to "revolting cruelty" have been warned by a judge to expect years behind bars.

Samuel Duncan, 27, and his 23-year-old partner, Kimberly Harte, subjected the girl to violence that shocked doctors, Middlesex Guildhall Crown Court heard.

The youngster, who suffered from cerebral palsy, was left in "excruciating pain" by the attacks.

The couple, of Maida Vale, west London, admitted three counts of child cruelty.

But they each denied an equal number of charges of causing grievous bodily harm with intent, between February 1 and March 18 this year, by blaming each other.

However, the jury took just three hours to decide they were lying.

Groin kicks

Shortly after her second birthday the child was taken into care when her parents began arguing violently.

But after some 20 months social workers decided it was safe for her to return to them. Within weeks the savage attacks began.

Jurors were told that during seven weeks in which the little girl had her fourth birthday, she was effectively scalped when huge clumps of her hair were ripped from her head.

On another occasion she was kicked "repeatedly" in the groin causing what the Crown described as "horrific injuries".

The court also heard that her mother poured a kettle of boiling water over her hands, searing the flesh from her bones.

'Worst abuse'

Eloise Marshall, prosecuting, said that in addition, throughout her ordeal, the youngster was regularly made to eat her own faeces.

Her suffering ended when her grandmother discovered what was going on and called the police.

Doctor Neil Wimalasundera, a paediatric registrar at London's St Mary's Hospital, was among those who treated the girl.

He told a social worker it was the "worst case of abuse I have ever seen".

Remanding the pair in custody while reports are prepared ahead of sentence, Judge Paul Worsley QC said: "It is distressing to think that any parent or indeed anyone could do this to a young child, particularly one with a handicap.

"You must both expect substantial prison sentences."

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