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Mass. Grandparents Get House Arrest

April 28, 1998

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) _ A couple convicted of raping their granddaughters must remain under house arrest while a judge decides whether they deserve a new trial.

Raymond and Shirley Souza, both 66, have spent five years under house arrest and seen two appeals rejected since they were convicted in 1993.

Superior Court Judge Elizabeth Dolan extended the restriction order Monday but did not say when she would rule on the motion for new trial.

Although sentenced to nine to 15 years in prison, the Souzas have been allowed to remain at home as they appeal. Their request for a new trial is based on the claim that their original attorney misrepresented them.

The Souzas were convicted of raping two granddaughters, 3- and 4-year-old girls who told of being forced to touch the private parts of ``Grammy″ and ``Papa.″ Experts found physical evidence consistent with sexual abuse, but no conclusive proof of it.

The allegations began in the late 1980s with the recurring dream of the youngest of the Souzas’ five children. The woman saw herself being raped as a child by her parents in the dream, which was interpreted by a therapist as a ``recovered memory.″

She warned her sister-in-law to keep her daughter away from the Souzas, and the 4-year-old girl was placed in therapy. The girl told her mother and her therapist she had been sexually abused by her grandparents, and the case was sent to state prosecutors in 1990.

The next year, the other girl told a therapist that she, too, had been abused by the grandparents. The Souzas say their daughter was a rape victim who was led astray by an unlicensed therapist.

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