The only surviving member of the Lin family, who were brutally murdered at their Sydney home in 2009, has revealed for the first time that she was sexually abused by her uncle.
Brenda Lin, then 15, was in New Caledonia on a school trip when Robert Xie, murdered her father, Min “Norman” Lin, her mother Yun Li “Lily” Lin, her aunt Yun Bin “Irene” Lin and her two brothers, Henry, 11, and Terry, 9.
During Xie’s trial, the prosecution claimed his motive for the horrific murders was his sexual obsession with his niece.
“That’s something that… I’m very private about. And it’s something that at this point in time I don’t feel comfortable talking about as well,” she told host Melissa Doyle on Seven’s Sunday Night.
After the murders, Ms Lin moved in with her aunty Kathy and Uncle Robert, and the sexual abuse continued, reports Yahoo7. During his murder trial, the judge said Brenda was subjected to “serialised sexual abuse” for the subsequent two years that she lived with Xie.
“But I also don’t think that something like this would warrant him to kill five people. I don’t know what goes through his mind and I can’t be sure and I don’t think I ever will be sure about why he was motivated to do what he did.“
“He wasn’t a murderer in my eyes,” she added.
“Realising that he might be involved was something that was life changing.”
Ms Lin's aunt continues to deny her husband’s involvement in the murder, which has driven a wedge between the once close pair.
“Which is really sad because I don’t have a lot of family left,” says Brenda.
“I hope one day she can realise that all I did was tell the truth and if he really is someone that’s done this horrible thing then she’s better off not with him.”
Up until recently, Ms Lin’s identity had been withheld, but since Xie was found guilty and sentenced to five life sentences for her family's murder, she has spoken out about the horror ordeal.
“It’s been seven and a half years since I lost my family — that is seven and a half years without a loving mother, seven and a half years without a loving father, seven and a half years without two exuberant brothers who were my best and closest friends and seven and a half years without an extremely kind aunt,” she said in her victim's impact statement according to The Australian.
“In this time I have finished my HSC, was accepted into uni, got my first part-time job and learnt to drive. But I have achieved all these things without my family beside me,” she said.
“These inherently happy moments are now at most bittersweet, they have now become a painful reminder of the family I have lost and I will never see again.”
Ms Lin also heartbreakingly described her biggest regret as, like most typical teenagers do, did not hug her father when he dropped her off for her school trip.
“Being a prideful teenager I did not say anything to my father, I just stood there awkwardly and thought to myself ‘It is just going to be a week, I am going to see them again really soon’,” she said.
“The pain of losing loved ones that never goes away and does not get any easier with time — as time goes on others may forget but I will have to live with the aftermath of the crime for the rest of my life.”
Xie was found guilty in January and at his sentence hearing Justice Elizabeth Fullerton sentenced Xie to five life sentences for each family member he killed reports News Corp.