Thursday, August 28, 2014
Paedophile, 26, jailed for raping 13-year-old girl after plying her with drugs is already back on the streets after serving less than four years in jail
- Mohsin Khan, from Rotherham, jailed in 2010 for grooming girl, 13, for sex
- Gave girl cannabis, drove her around in his car and said they had a future
- He is one of five British Pakistani men convicted of abusing Rotherham girls
- Police facing questions about how they will catch 'hundreds of child rapists'
- A damning report says 1,400 girls were abused by Asian men in the town
Strolling outside his Rotherham home, one of the few men convicted over the grooming scandal was free to walk the street last night.
Mohsin Khan, 26, has been released from prison less than four years after he was convicted of grooming a 13-year-old girl for sex.
He is now able to walk freely through the town where he and four accomplices sexually exploited teenage girls.
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Free: Mohsin Khan walks the streets of Rotherham yesterday. He was given a four-year jail sentence for grooming a girl of 13, but has now been released
Meanwhile his victim – and hundreds of others like her – are forced to live in fear. Many are forced to endure the fact that their abusers never faced justice as a result of shocking blunders by police and council workers.
His freedom last night became a symbol of the catastrophic failure to protect vulnerable girls in the town from abusers.
Now, police in Rotherham are facing searching questions about how they are going to catch the ‘hundreds of child rapists’ who are thought to be still at large.
- As a true Guardian reader, and liberal leftie, I didn't want to rock the multi-cultural boat says former Rotherham Labour MP Denis MacShane as he insists no-one raised town's child sex abuse scandal with him
- 'I saved all my clothes I was raped in but the police lost them and said it was my word against his': Shocking claims of Rotherham sex abuse gang victim whose parents sent her abroad when authorities failed to protect her
- Social workers knew the truth, but called ME a liar
- Even our police are blinded by liberal dogma, writes SIMON DANCZUK
- A raft of abuse files but crime tsar says he didn¿t see them: Shaun Wright is urged to quit by Labour as he continues to shift blame for the scandal
- We won't take the blame! 1,400 young girls abused, rapists still on the loose, but the officials in charge of the Rotherham abuse scandal still continue to pass the buck
The South Yorkshire force pledged to ‘relentlessly’ bring the sex predators to justice after a damning report exposed the abuse suffered by at least 1,400 girls at the hands of Asian men.
But serious concerns over its ability to conduct such complex investigations have been raised because of its appalling failures in such cases to date.
A lawyer representing the victims said police had missed ‘clear opportunities’ to bring sex offenders to justice.
There has been only one successful prosecution, in 2010, for sexual offences by Asian men against Rotherham girls. This resulted in the conviction of five British-born Pakistani men – including Khan.
To outsiders, he lived a reputable, middle-class life.
By the age of 20, he had secured a job as a mortgage advisor, owned two semi-detached houses and ran a cafe and several other businesses.
But beneath the facade of respectability, Khan was living a life of depravity.
In 2008 he began grooming the 13-year-old girl for sex.
He gave her cannabis, drove her around in one of his two cars, and persuaded her that they had a future together.
His victim later told police that he spoiled her ‘like a princess’.
Despite being well aware of her tender age, he promised the child they would settle down together.
But when he had gained the girl’s trust, he went on to viciously assault her, raping her in the car he had first used to impress her.
When his crime finally came to light, he told police he had only given her a lift.
He told officers: ‘She looked no more than ten or 11 years old – the same age as my little brother.
‘There’s no way I’d touch her.’
Khan received a jail sentence of four years and was placed on the sex offenders register. Last night, he was already out on the streets of his hometown.
By contrast, Khan’s victim, who had been abused by five different Asian men, said at the trial: ‘I don’t think I will ever be able to return to Rotherham and feel safe without looking over my shoulder.’
The 26-year-old gave the girl cannabis, drove her around in one of his two cars and promised her they had a future together
David Greenwood of Switalskis Solicitors, who is representing 15 of the victims in a class action against the police, said yesterday:
‘South Yorkshire Police failed to act on information which could have led to the arrest of perpetrators.’
Simon Danczuk, the MP for Rochdale who exposed the Cyril Smith scandal, said urgent action was needed to catch the criminals who have committed ‘appalling child sex abuse on an industrial scale’.
‘There are many, many other perpetrators of this type of crime out there – hundreds of child rapists out there,’ he said. ‘What are South Yorkshire Police doing to catch these people?’
No police officer has yet been sacked or disciplined over the failures in Rotherham.
The two chief constables at the helm during the height of the failings have since left on hefty pensions.
The devastating Rotherham report by Professor Alexis Jay revealed how officers from South Yorkshire Police treated victims with ‘contempt’.
They turned a blind eye to their plight and in many cases held them responsible. This included the case of an 11-year-old who was viewed by police as having ‘consensual sex’ with an adult man.
'Muslim leaders fully aware of problem but did nothing': Pakistani community worker makes explosive claims on Rotherham's religious leaders who 'talked in mosques but not to police'
- 1,400 girls were abused by Pakistani gangs in Rotherham for 16 years
- Pakistani community workers said abuse scandal was 'discussed'
- She said religious leaders were 'contacted by agencies about the abuses'
- But they 'discussed it at the mosque' rather than going to the police
- Comes as council officers face calls to step down over the report
Muslim leaders were aware of the child sexual exploitation scandal in Rotherham but talked in Mosques rather than going to police, a community worker has claimed.
The abuse of at least 1,400 girls at the hands of Pakistani gangs in the South Yorkshire town for 16 years was shrouded in secrecy.
But according to the head of the United Multicultural Centre, the scandal was widely discussed within the Asian community.
Scandal: A Pakistani community worker claims Muslim leaders were aware of the abuse scandal in Rotherham
Parveen Qureshi told BBC Sheffield: 'The Asian community leaders, they knew about it, it was discussed at the mosque and other places.
'The leaders who agencies had contacted to discuss issues, they knew about this.
'Community leaders were aware of what was happening and they were trying to solve that problem for forever - not just on this occasion but on many occasions people were talking to the community's leaders.
- Deputy police commissioner quits over Rotherham child sex scandal - but her boss STILL clings on despite pressure from Cameron
- 'It's a massive cover-up': Social workers knew the truth but called ME a liar, claims girl who was abused when she was just 14
- Crime tsar quits the Labour Party ¿ but won't give up his job... after claiming he never saw damning reports into abuse
- 'It was always discussed in the community what was happening.'
She added: 'It was not started over night, it was going on for a long time'.
The shocking revelation comes amid calls for senior council workers in charge between 1997 and 2013 to resign from their current posts both at Rotherham and elsewhere.
The shameless buck-passing between council chiefs continued today even as detectives were urged to finally hunt down the child rapists who they allowed to escape justice for 16 years.
Among the officials shrugging off responsibility was police and crime commissioner Shaun Wright, who stubbornly defied demands for his resignation from the Home Secretary.
Report: Professor Jay's report revealed 1,400 girls had been abused by mainly Pakistani gangs for 16 years
Under pressure: Shaun Wright (left) and Joyce Thacker (right) are facing calls to step down over the scandal
Even his deputy Tracey Cheetham has now resigned - and urged her boss to do the same.
Ms Cheetham said she said she felt 'unable to continue' in the role and added: 'It is vital for people to have confidence in the office of police and crime commissioner and, with this in mind, I believe it would have been the right thing for Shaun Wright to resign.'
It came as Education Secretary Nicky Morgan also announced that Ofsted would carry out an early inspection of child protection services in Rotherham.
Prime Minister David Cameron is among those calling for Mr Wright to quit, describing the report into 16 years of widespread child abuse in the Yorkshire town as 'deeply shocking'.
He said: 'I think the Home Secretary [Theresa May] was right yesterday to say, having looked at the report, the fact that the police commissioner was at the time head of children's services, that the right decision would be to resign and take full responsibility for what happened.'
And shockingly, the woman in charge of Rotherham's children's services for five years of the child sex abuse scandal tried to downplay the true scale of the offences.
Ms Qureshi later appeared to backtrack on her statement, claiming she intended to say the report revealed senior council workers evidently knew about the scandal.
‘Free Palestine, boycott Israel’ messages stamped on bank notes and handed out by newsagent
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Revealed: How fear of being seen as racist stopped social workers saving up to 1,400 children from sexual exploitation at the hands of Asian men in just ONE TOWN
- Report found 1,400 children abused between 1997 and 2013 in Rotherham
- The figure is likely to be a conservative estimate of the true scale
- Victims terrorised with guns and doused in petrol and threatened with fire
- More than a third of the cases were already know to agencies
- Author of the report condemned 'blatant' failings by council's leadership
- Action blocked by political correctness as staff 'feared appearing racist'
- Majority of victims described the perpetrators as 'Asian' men
- Leader of Rotherham Council has stepped down with immediate effect
- No council employees will receive disciplinary action, leaders state
The sexual abuse of about 1,400 children at the hands of Asian men went unreported for 16 years because staff feared they would be seen as racist, a report said today.
Children as young as 11 were trafficked, beaten, and raped by large numbers of men between 1997 and 2013 in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, the council commissioned review into child protection revealed.
And shockingly, more than a third of the cases were already know to agencies.
But according to the report's author: 'several staff described their nervousness about identifying the ethnic origins of perpetrators for fear of being thought racist'.
Horrific: A report has discovered that 1,400 children were sexually exploited in Rotherham over a 16-year period. Adil Hussain (left) and Razwan Razaq (right) were jailed in 2010 for grooming young girls in the town
Gang: Umar Razaq was another of the five-strong sex gang jailed and placed on the sex offenders' register
Professor Alexis Jay, who wrote the report, condemned the 'blatant' collective failures by the council's leadership, concluding: 'It is hard to describe the appalling nature of the abuse that child victims suffered.'
The landmark report which exposed widespread failures of the council, police and social services revealed:
- Victims were doused in petrol and threatened with being set alight, terrorised with guns, made to witness brutally-violent rapes and told they would be the next if they spoke out;
- They were raped by multiple perpetrators, trafficked to other towns and cities in the north of England, abducted, beaten and intimidated;
- One victim described gang rape as 'a way of life';
- Police 'regarded many child victims with contempt';
- Some fathers tried to rescue their children from abuse but were arrested themselves;
- The approximate figure of 1,400 abuse victims is likely to be a conservative estimate of the true scale of abuse.
The lack of reports was partly down to a fear of being racist, Prof Jay wrote, as the majority of the perpetrators were described as 'Asian men', and many were said to be of Pakistani origin.
One young person told the inquiry that 'gang rape' was a usual part of growing up in the area of Rotherham where she lived.
Jailed: Zafran Ramzan, 21, was jailed for nine years and Mohsin Khan for four in the same case
In two cases, fathers had tracked down their daughters and tried to remove them from houses where they were being abused - only to be arrested themselves when police were called to the scene.
And one child declined her initial offer to give a statement after allegedly receiving a text from a perpetrator threatening to harm her younger sister.
The failures happened despite three reports between 2002 and 2006 'which could not have been clearer in the description of the situation in Rotherham'.
Prof Jay said the first of these reports was 'effectively suppressed' because senior officers did not believe the data.
The other two were ignored, the professor said.
Fears had also been raised by schools over the 16 years but the alerts went uninvestigated.
Teachers reported seeing children as young as 11, 12 and 13 being picked up outside schools by cars and taxis, given presents and mobile phones and taken to meet large numbers of unknown men in Rotherham or other local towns and cities.
The majority of victims believed the perpetrators to be their boyfriend who gave them gifts, alcohol and drugs. Some of the victims still maintain they were not groomed or abused.
Analysing the case studies, Prof Jay said many of the children came from dysfunctional families, had parents with addictions, and had suffered domestic or sexual abuse as a child.
Condemned: Professor Alexis Jay, author of the report, blasted the 'blatant' failing of Rotherham Council
Widespread: More than a third of the sexual abuse cases were known to agencies but not followed up
Some had serious mental health problems.
Councillors seemed to dismiss previous reports as a one-off problem which they hoped would go away, according to Prof Jay.
She said: 'Others remembered clear direction from their managers not to do so.'
The spotlight first fell on Rotherham in 2010 when five men, described by a judge as 'sexual predators', were given lengthy jail terms after they were found guilty of grooming teenage girls for sex.
The five men - Umar Razaq, Adil Hussain, Razwan Razaq, Zafran Ramzan, and Mohsin Khan - preyed on their victims over several months and threatened them with violence if they refused their advances.
One of the men branded his victim a ‘white bitch’ when she resisted, while a second smirked: ‘I’ve used you and abused you.'
The men, all British-born Pakistanis, attacked the four girls in play areas, parks and in the back of their cars, Sheffield Crown Court heard.
NO COUNCIL EMPLOYEES WILL FACE DISCIPLINARY ACTION OVER ABUSE
They gave them gifts and introduced them to their friends. The girls were abused so frequently that after many months it ‘became a way of life’.
The girls, who were being monitored by social services, were eventually rescued by police and removed from their homes amid growing concerns for their safety.
The leader of Rotherham Council, Roger Stone, has today quit in light of the findings. He has led the council since 2003.
The current Police Commissioner for South Yorkshire is Shaun Wright, who was widely criticised for failing to tackle sex abuse in Rotherham during his five-year stint in the council's children and young people's department.
From 2005 to 2010, Cllr Wright was in charge of children's services in the borough and worked closely with Joyce Thacker, who became Director of Children's Services in 2008.
The prosecution was the first of a series of high-profile cases in the last four years that have revealed the exploitation of young girls in towns and cities including Rochdale, Derby and Oxford.
HORRIFIC MURDER OF GIRL, 17, KILLED FOR 'BRINGING SHAME' ON TWO PAKISTANI FAMILIES WHOSE MEN HAD USED HER FOR SEX... AND SOCIAL WORKERS KNEW SHE WAS AT RISK FROM THE AGE OF 11
Warnings: The report comes after two others done between 2002 and 2006 which 'could not have been clearer'
Children as young as 11 were doused in petrol and threatened with fire and told not to speak out in the town
Following the 2010 case, The Times claimed that details from 200 restricted-access documents showed how police and child protection agencies in the South Yorkshire town had extensive knowledge of these activities for a decade, yet a string of offences went unprosecuted.
The allegations led to a range of official investigations, including one by the Home Affairs Select Committee.
Yvette Cooper MP, Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary, called the report 'utterly devastating' and praised the victims for coming forward.
She said: 'Their bravery in coming forward to give evidence to this inquiry is truly admirable. We can only hope this will help to protect other children from abuse in the future.
''That is why it is urgent that the Government gets the overarching inquiry into child abuse up and running. We need this to focus on gaps in the current child protection system, as well as historic child abuse.'
Last year, South Yorkshire police and crime commissioner (PCC) Shaun Wright said there had been 'a failure of management' at South Yorkshire Police as he responded to a report into his force on this issue by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC).
'I ABHOR THE LIFELONG DAMAGE THAT WAS WREAKED UPON THE LIVES OF ALL THOSE AFFECTED': STATEMENT FROM ROTHERHAM COUNCIL LEADER ROGER STONE AS HE STEPS DOWN FOLLOWING DAMNING REPORT
Rotherham child sex victim, 15, doused in petrol and threatened with fire after she was trafficked to three different cities
One victim of child sex abuse in Rotherham was trafficked for sex to Leeds, Bradford and Sheffield by the time she was 15-years-old and was doused in petrol and threatened with being set alight.
The girl, referred to only as Child B in today's report, was threatened with being forced into prostitution, her older sibling was taken to hospital, and the windows of their house were shattered.
The report said she was 'groomed by an older man involved in the exploitation of other children'.
The report said: 'Child B loved this man. He trafficked her to Leeds, Bradford and Sheffield and offered to provide her with a flat in one of those cities.
'A child protection referral was made but the social care case file recorded no response to this.'
The report detailed how 'within just a few months Child B and her family were living in fear of their lives'.
The report said: 'Child B and her mother refused to have anything more to do with the police because they believed the police could do nothing to protect them.'
It added: 'Child B had been stalked and had petrol poured over her head and was threatened with being set alight.
'She took overdoses. She and her family were too terrified to make statements to the police.'
The report said the teenager was homeless by the time she was 18.
It concluded: 'She referred herself to children's social care and was given advice about benefits. No further action was taken. This child and her family were completely failed by all services with the exception of Risky Business (a local support group).'
A girl referred to as Child D was 13 when she was groomed, raped and trafficked by a violent sexual predator in the town.
'Police and children's social care were ineffective and seemed to blame the child,' the report said.
It said: 'An initial assessment accurately described the risks to Child D but appeared to blame her for "placing herself at risk of sexual exploitation and danger".'
And the report concluded: 'Other than Risky Business, agencies showed no comprehension that she had been groomed at 13, that she was terrified of the perpetrators, and that her attempts to placate them were themselves a symptom of the serious emotional harm that child sexual exploitation had caused her.'