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The brother of Oscar-winning star Mo'Nique has admitted to sexually abusing his sister for years during their childhood.
Gerald Imes appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show on Monday, where he apologized for his behavior that allegedly began when the actress was just 7 years old.
"I'm sorry, Mo'Nique," Imes said. "I'm sorry. I betrayed everybody's trust. I broke that trust. I broke that bond."
Mo'nique, who has spoken publicly about the abuse she endured at the hands of her older brother, saying she channeled "that monster" when she played the abusive mother in Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire. She refused to be involved in Imes' interview with Oprah or respond to his apology.
Imes blamed the sexual abuse, which continued for two years, on the fact that he too had been molested and was using drugs to get through the pain.
"I started using cocaine, heroin, alcohol at the age of 11," he told Winfrey. "I used these drugs to hide my own pain, to hide my own fears ... The drugs allowed me and afforded me the opportunity to hurt my sister."
Imes was later sentenced to 12 years in prison for molesting another girl. But now he says he's looking to repair his relationship with his sister and move forward.
"I can only hope by coming forth today...that somewhere down the line …we can come back together as siblings," he said. "I understand your pain. I truly think, let's share this together and move on."
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