California couple arrested after trapped children discovered in their home

A Californian couple have been arrested, after police discovered 13 people held captive and neglected inside their house.

Ranging in age between two and 29 years old, the victims are believed to all be the offspring of 57-year-old David Allen Turpin and 49-year-old Louise Anna Turpin, according to Riverside County Sheriff's Department.

The discovery was made, after one of the captives managed to break free and call 911 from a cell phone she discovered inside the house.

She told police her siblings were being held captive by her parents, and some of them were bound with chains and padlocks.

When police arrived at the address in Perris, California, they discovered what they believed to be 12 emaciated children locked in the house in foul-smelling surroundings.

The officers were shocked to discover that seven of the captives were actually adults, ranging in age from 18 to 29.

All 13 victims were interviewed by police, and provided with food and drink, after they claimed to be starving.

The children were sent to Riverside University Hospital for treatment, while the adults were admitted to Corona Regional Medical Centre.

Child Protective Services (CPS) and Adult Protective Services (APS) are assisting with an investigation into the crime.

Local police say the parents were "unable to immediately provide a logical reason why their children were restrained in that manner", and have now been arrested.

They have been charged with torture and child endangerment, and bail has been set a US$9 million (NZ$12.3 million) each.