Hannah McGlade spent years waiting for the criminal justice system to bring the men she accused of sexually assaulting her at 15 to trial - but that day never came.
No charges were laid.
The two men, both non-Aboriginal, were pillars of respectability but Dr McGlade, 43, says they have left a trail of trauma and broken lives.
It is a story Dr McGlade says is all too common in Aboriginal communities.
Now a high-profile human rights lawyer and victims advocate, Dr McGlade - who was the first Aboriginal woman to graduate from a WA law school - is fighting to bring attention to the sexual abuse of Aboriginal children and place the issue firmly on the national political agenda.
It is a fight that has already made her powerful enemies, particularly among some Aboriginal men.
"I have encountered Aboriginal male leaders who have abused children and have never been called to account for what they have done ... and they have paraded themselves as human rights leaders," she said.
"It is time for a new era in Aboriginal human rights, one when women and children's right to live free of abuse and violence is given the utmost respect."
In her book Our Greatest Challenge: Aboriginal Children and Human Rights, released last month, Dr McGlade argues that the sexual abuse of Aboriginal women and children has been normalised and hidden under the cloak of culture.
She argues there is no evidence that sexual abuse has anything to do with Aboriginal culture and even if it did, that is no excuse.
Dr McGlade says our colonial history is in part responsible for the normalisation of the sexual abuse of Aboriginal children and that, in the early days of white settlement, the rape of Aboriginal women and girls by the settlers was common and rarely, if ever, prosecuted.
"We have to treat sexual abuse of Aboriginal children as a very serious human rights issue in Australia," Dr McGlade said.
"We have to stop normalising it and recognise our historical past where this abuse was part of the frontier, part of the history and it was sanctioned."
She documents failures in the justice system to bring culprits to trial and shows that disclosure often ends in the suicide of the victim.
Dr McGlade calls to account all who remain silent in the face of the sexual abuse of children, from politicians and community leaders to grandmothers.
The book won the 2011 Stanner Award for indigenous authors and was described by the judges as a "brave and powerful contribution to understanding a major social evil".
It is dedicated to Susan Taylor, a victim of sexual abuse, who at 15 was found hanged in the laundry block of the Swan Valley Noongar Community in February 1999.
In an open finding, Coroner Alastair Hope said Ms Taylor's story was by no means unique and that sexual abuse of children was endemic in Aboriginal communities throughout WA.
Fast-forward more than a decade and past numerous government inquiries and Dr McGlade says little has changed.
She says former prime minister John Howard helped bring the issue to the attention of the nation but says the voices of Aboriginal women and children need to be heard if the violence and sexual abuse is to stop.
UNICEF Australia chief executive Norman Gillespie said in launching the book that it stood out as "an important and profound document".
"There may be many who would rather Hannah had not written the book," he said.
"It could also have been titled Our Greatest Taboo and we owe her a great debt for her courage."