A German teen who was beaten, whipped while pulling a horse cart, and made to sleep outside over the years was eventually freed because of a photo, villagers in Bosnia-Herzegovina told the Associated Press.
The AP reported that each time Bosnian police responded to the neighbors' calls, they could not find the girl. It took years but finally, neighbor Sead Makalic was able to take a photo of the teen using his mobile phone and convince police.
"I could not watch any more what they were doing to her, how they were beating her," said Makalic.
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The spokesman for the prosecutor's office, Admir Arnautovic, said the 19-year-old was now recovering. She was found in the forest near the town of Kalesija, according to the BBC. Prosecutors said she was not allowed to attend school.
He said the teen's stepfather, Milenko Marinkovic, 52, and his partner Slavojka Marinkovic, 45, are detained and accused of illegal imprisonment and cruelty.
The woman's mother, Kristina Siegner, 54, who was living with the couple as Milenko's legal wife, insisted her daughter was mentally disabled and had never been mistreated.