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Caitlan Coleman is quiet no more

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01.06.2019

Not only was it psychological, it was physical, it was sexual. I was actually more afraid of him than our captors.

Hostage videos. Liberation videos. Carefully crafted media interviews.

There's never been a time when Joshua Boyle and Caitlan Coleman haven't riveted.

Whether pleading for help as a pair of galumphing terror-tourists abducted in Afghanistan and kept imprisoned by the Taliban for five unimaginably arduous years, or spinning the narrative of their hardship after rescue by Pakistani troops in October 2017, or in the delivery of testimony in an Ottawa courtroom in April at a trial that has now been procedurally sidetracked.

Most of the time, it had been Boyle speaking for them both. And there was always something suspicious about that, how his wife was relegated to the shadows, though she'd suffered at least as much and arguably more, giving birth to three children while captive, in the most primitive of circumstances.

That they'd been abducted while on a 2012 backpacking trip that dipped into Afghanistan, Coleman pregnant at the time, is beyond dispute. But as the story has unfolded these past couple of years, the account of their tribulations has shifted, details altered, sympathies shrinking.

The entire framework of the couple's relationship and the he-said-she-said ordeal they endured collapsed in early 2018 when Boyle was arrested early last year in Ottawa. He's on trial facing 19 charges, including multiple counts of sexual assault, assault, forcible confinement, threatening and criminal harassment. Coleman, the alleged victim, has chosen to waive the publication ban which protects the identity of sex assault complainants. The identity of a second alleged victim remains........

© Peterborough Examiner