A Sherbrooke, Que., couple accused of abusing one of their four children was charged in a local courthouse late Tuesday morning.

The 34-year-old man and 27-year-old woman cannot be identified under the provincial Youth Protection Act because it could identify the children.

The couple were arrested Monday morning. 

The two were charged on Tuesday with forcible confinement, assault, assault causing bodily harm and failure to provide the necessaries of life to a child — in this case, food — in the case of one of the children.

Police said a five-year-old boy removed from the home was so badly malnourished that they feared for his life. Two other children, girls aged four and six, were in better condition when taken from the home, said Quebec provincial police on Monday.

The eldest child, 14, did not live in the family home.

The woman is also pregnant.

The couple is scheduled to return to court on Friday and may face additional charges.