- Shabir Ahmed remains in jail for his role in the Rochdale child grooming gang
- He was ordered to return to his native Pakistan following his conviction
- But he and three others are fighting deportation in a long-running legal battle
- He previously branded Theresa May a 'trouble maker' at an Immigration Tribunal
The ringleader of the Rochdale child sex ring is continuing to fight his extradition to Pakistan at taxpayer expense.
Shabir Ahmed - who told his victims to call him 'daddy' - was the head of the gang portrayed in the shocking BBC drama Three Girls this week.
As the programme shone a further spotlight on the scandal, it emerged that Ahmed - who was jailed in 2012 - is still trying to stay in Britain.
Shabir Ahmed, the ringleader of the Rochdale sex gang, who was played by Simon Nagra in the BBC drama Three Girls (right), is fighting plans to deport him to Pakistan
Ahmed, a Pakistani who acquired British citizenship by naturalisation, was set to be removed from the UK following his conviction for the sickening crimes.
He, along with at least eight others, plied girls as young as 13 with drink and drugs before 'passing them around' for sex, their trial heard.
Earlier this year, immigration judges rejected claims that removing them from the UK would affect the welfare of their children.
He said he was convicted by 'eleven white jurors', adding: 'It's become fashionable to blame everything on Muslims these days.'
Three times married Ahmed told the court he had four children living in the UK, had lived here for nearly 50 years and had £83,000 in a UK bank account.
Of the nine men convicted over the scandal in 2012, only Shabir Ahmed, 64, who was caged for 22 years, and Mohammed Sajid, 40, who was jailed for 12 years, remain behind bars.
Mohammed Amin, 50; Abdul Qayyum, 49; and Hamid Safi, 27, were all jailed for five years or less and have now completed their sentences.
Adil Khan, 47; Abdul Rauf, 48; Abdul Aziz, 46; and Kabeer Hassan, 30, are all believed to have been released on licence after going beyond the half-way point of their sentences.
The other three mounting the case against deportation are Adil Khan, Abdul Rauf and Abdul Aziz.
The case received renewed attention during the BBC's Three Girls drama with Maxine Peake
A Home Office spokesman said: 'All four men have been granted permission to appeal at the Court of Appeal and it would be inappropriate to comment further on ongoing legal proceedings.'
Ahmed, known as Daddy, had previously taken a case to the European Court of Human Rights claiming that his all-white jury was biased and he wasn't given a fair trial.
But judges in Strasbourg unanimously threw out his case, insisting that there was 'simply no proof' jurors acted improperly.
Yesterday one of the gang’s victims told how she ‘just froze’ when she came face-to-face with one of the abusers in Rochdale only a few weeks ago.
Speaking under the pseudonym Lily, the woman – who was groomed from the age of 11 – told Good Morning Britain that she hadn’t been taken seriously by the authorities.
Speaking under the pseudonym Lily, the woman – who was groomed from the age of 11 – told Good Morning Britain that she hadn’t been taken seriously by the authorities
‘I actually bumped into one [of the abusers] in my hometown a few weeks ago,’ she told the ITV programme. ‘I just, I just froze. I was like, there’s nothing I can do – I’ve brought it to court, he was sentenced and now he’s out.’
Lily, who had been unhappy in her foster home, said she was first targeted as a child while wandering the streets. ‘I was just kind of on my own,’ she said, describing how the paedophiles built her trust by buying her alcohol and cigarettes.
‘I genuinely thought I was in a relationship,’ she added.
She spoke of her frustration at the lack of action taken by authorities following her rape ordeal aged 15. ‘I had been told that this thing that had happened to me was really, really horrific but when I tried to report it, nothing happened,’ she said.
‘That made me go back to thinking there was nothing wrong with what was going on.
‘If something was wrong, and it was really bad, then the police would have done something.’
Ex-Labour MP Simon Danczuk slams his old party for refusing to pick social worker who smashed the Rochdale grooming scandal as a candidate for the General Election
Labour party bosses have been slammed for refusing to pick the courageous health worker who smashed the Rochdale grooming scandal to stand as the town's MP.
Sexual health worker Sara Rowbotham's brave battle to expose the town's child sex gangs has been portrayed by Maxine Peake in the hard-hitting BBC1 drama Three Girls this week.
A decision by Labour not to make Rochdale social worker Sara Rowbotham its parliamentary candidate has been criticised by the area's former MP Simon Danczuk
But she was overlooked for the Labour nomination to run as the town's MP when the party chose former police and crime commissioner Tony Lloyd.
Former Rochdale MP Simon Danczuk, who spoke to victims and campaigned to raise awareness of the issue, has criticised the decision.
He said: 'Labour missed a real opportunity to select a candidate with a fantastic track record, who broke up Rochdale's grooming gang.
'I wouldn't be standing as an independent if Sara - a great local councillor - had been chosen. People in Rochdale would have preferred her.'
Ms Rowbotham worked for the NHS' crisis intervention team in Rochdale from 2004 to 2014 and referred cases of abused girls to police, only for her concerns to be ignored.
Ms Rowbotham's battle to expose grooming in the town was portrayed by Maxine Peake in the harrowing BBC drama Three Girls this week
Ms Rowbotham said: 'Tony is the best candidate for Rochdale and will make an excellent MP. I applied for the vacancy and was pleased myapplication to be interviewed by the party was successful.
'It was a fair and open selection process and the best candidate won. Tony is far more experienced and has the support of the people of Rochdale.'