Christine Button, boss of a nursery based near Tamworth, was branded ‘sadistic’ over the mistreatment of the children in her care and has been handed a 12-month suspended sentence and ordered to perform 100 hours of unpaid work, subject to an overnight curfew for fourth months and made to pay £600 costs.

No5 Criminal Barrister Simon Hunka, prosecuting, said that two apprentices had concerns over the behavior of Button as they were working at the nursery in 2014.

He said: “They took the brave step, seeing the disparity between what they were seeing and what they were being taught, of telling their tutor, which led to Ofsted and later the police being informed.”

Mr Hunka continued that Button created an intimidating atmosphere and there would have been consequences to those who challenged her.

The court heard that Button would deliberately upset the children and when staff would challenge her, Button would claim that she was trained in psychological manipulation of children.

Mr Hunka said that her conduct was “simply cruel”.

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Simon Hunka is part of the Criminal Law group at No5 Barristers’ Chambers. Click here to view Simon’s Criminal Law practice.