Family adopted 35-year-old woman thinking she was a 13-year-old boy

If you like thriller movies, you may have watched The Orphan. Launched in 2009, the feature tells the story of a couple who, after losing a child during childbirth, decide to adopt a child.

Attention! The rest of the text contains spoilers! If you haven't seen the movie and don't want to know the ending, don't keep reading!

To summarize: The couple adopts Esther, a very talented and friendly 9 year old girl. Apparently she fits the family very well, but some weird situations started to happen involving the girl. Suspicious, Kate, the foster mother, investigates Esther's past, finding that she is actually a 33-year-old adult named Leena Klammer. A rare hormonal disorder, called hypopituitarism, caused her to not develop physically, maintaining her childlike appearance.

The outcome of the movie is surprising, but at the same time it seems surreal. However, the story you will now know involves a much more macabre real plot and an unhappy ending. Taken in the city of Kurim, Czech Republic in 2007, the case is also known as the "Mauerova case" and is considered "the worst child abuse situation in the country".

Like Esther, Barbora Skrlová, 33, had a glandular disease that made her look like a teenager. Even though she was in college, Barbora sometimes used her disorder to pretend to be a teenager.

During her studies, she met and befriended the young Katerina Mauerova, who lived with her sister Klara and her two young children, Ondrej and Jakub. From early on, the sisters were disturbed, believing in mysticism too much and making sure that they were designed to fulfill a mission from God.

Katerina and Klara

With a violent character and psychological disturbances, Barbora spent many years undergoing psychological treatment and even escaped during one of his hospitalizations. She was able to strengthen her friendship with her sisters by living with them. Their personality, which was already out of the ordinary, was brought to light by Barbora, who influenced them negatively. The three became part of the Grail Movement, which believed that man could reach paradise by doing good things on earth. However, the same group understood that its members were free from existing confessions and taboos in society.

Klara and Barbora

During her life with her sisters, Barbora exhibited a double personality: sometimes she was an adult woman, sometimes a child. When she took on her childish side, she was jealous of Klara's attention to her children and gradually began to manipulate situations that made them guilty. Klara, believing her children were getting worse and worse, became desperate and asked Barbora for advice. She did not hesitate to suggest that children should be confined within an iron cage.

Klara and the sons Ondrej and Jakub

In 2007, Klara, Katerina and Barbora placed Ondrej and Jakub inside the cage, feeding them through the bars. The children were stripped of clothes and could not leave or even go to the bathroom. Unsatisfied with the absurd situation she had imposed, Barbora continued to give orders to her sisters, who began to torture the children: cigarette burns on their arms and legs, shocks, beatings, and even drowning sessions. One day Barbora and the sisters went to the cage, and Klara asked Ondrej to put his leg out of the bars. With a sharp knife, she and Barbora began to cut off the boy's screaming leg in pain. After removing several pieces, the three ate the boy's meat in front of the children. A little less than a month later, it was Jakub's turn to be the victim of cannibalism when his mother cut off parts of his arms.

To further control Jakub and Ondrej, Barbora came up with the idea: he bought a wireless surveillance camera, similar to baby monitors. That way they could keep up with what the kids did and when one of them tortured the little ones. However, something totally unexpected happened: a family had recently moved to the next house and also installed a similar camera to take care of the couple's baby. What was not their surprise when, instead of seeing their son in the pictures, they came across two children trapped in a cage?

Images taken by surveillance camera

A few days passed before the man finally understood that the signal he was intercepting on his TV was from the next door. He soon made a complaint to the police, who on 10 May 2007 broke into the residence, arresting sisters Katerina and Klara. Once the police found the area where Jakub and Ondrej were trapped, they were startled by the strong smell of urine, feces and blood. One of the children was passed out, the other in shock, and extremely injured from a long period of torture and abuse.

Location was dirty and sticky

Standing near the cage, a girl was holding a stuffed animal and, as soon as she came across the agents, ran toward them for help. She said her name was Anika, she was 12 and she was Klara's adopted daughter. Still shaken by everything they had found in the house, the police took the girl out and turned their attention to the injured children, trying to open the cage.

The girl was Barbora, who took advantage of the officers' distraction and fled the scene. The children were taken to hospital while Barbora fled to Norway and assumed another identity: this time she was Adam, a 13-year-old boy. Believing her sad story, a family adopted her, and she went to school again.

Only a year after the incident did the police find Barbora's hideout. Upon arrest, his new adoptive family was incredulous, not understanding what a 13-year-old could have done so wrong to receive treatment from those of the police. Only then did they find out that they had adopted a 35-year-old criminal.

Barbora was extradited to the Czech Republic, where she was tried with Klara and Katerina. The sisters claimed that Barbora had brainwashed them and lost track of what they were doing.

Currently, boys are living with maternal grandparents.

* Posted on 12/01/2015