Warning: The post deals with child sexual abuse and may be triggering for people.
This week disgraced Hey Dad! actor and convicted child sex offender Robert Hughes was granted parole after eight years behind bars. Once released, he will be deported to the United Kingdom. He was jailed in 2014 after being found guilty of 10 charges relating to sexual and indecent acts on young girls. Below is Mia Freedman's interview with one of his victims, Sarah Monahan, first published in 2016. Sarah played Hughes' on-screen daughter on the hit Australian TV show Hey Dad! and in the No Filter chat, she details the moment she 'snapped', facing Hughes in court, and why she's decided to never become a mother herself.
Sarah Monahan is talking.
After decades and decades of staying quiet, she is finally free to say what she wants.
And what she wants to say is: protect your children. Protect them from an adult world where they don’t belong. Protect them from predators.
Because who was protecting Sarah when she played pig-tailed Jenny Kelly on Channel Seven’s hit sitcom Hey Dad! in the 80s and 90s?
Listen to the full interview with Sarah Monahan on No Filter in 2016. Listen below.
Australia watched her grow up; we watched her change from a little girl into a teenager until the show finished in 1993. But there was a lot we didn’t see.
We didn't see that behind the scenes there was an abuser hiding in plain sight.
In 2014, Robert Hughes was convicted of 10 charges relating to sexual and indecent acts perpetrated on four young girls in the 1980s and 1990s. He was jailed for 10 years and nine months with a non-parole period of six years. Hughes has twice been rejected by the NSW State Parole Authority, but now - in 2022 - he's been granted parole after eight years behind bars.