Whistleblowing detective says police chiefs should face charges over Asian grooming gang scandal that saw 97 men left free to rape or abuse 57 young girls because officers feared arrests would 'stoke racial tensions'
- Greater Manchester Police and local authorities slammed in damning report
- Officers were aware of 'many sensitive community issues' between 2002 and 05
- They feared 'the incitement of racial hatred' while victims did not get justice
A whistleblowing detective has said Greater Manchester Police chiefs should face charges after a damning new report revealed they left 97 men free to groom 57 young girls by dropping their investigation into Asian grooming gangs.
GMP detectives launched Operation Augusta in 2004 after the death of a 15-year-old girl called Victoria Agoglia who previously told carers she had been raped and injected with heroin by an Asian man.
But the probe was shelved a year later despite the force uncovering almost 100 paedophiles in south Manchester who later went on to rape and abuse dozens of young girls in the areas.
After the devastating findings were published in a new report today, former GMP detective Maggie Oliver has slammed officials responsible for dropping their enquiries.
Speaking at the launch of the report, which was commissioned by Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham, Mrs Oliver said: 'Fifteen years - the perpetrators that we knew on Operation Augusta were abusing generations of children were allowed to walk free.
'The kids themselves that I spoke to - I was on Operation Augusta, I wrote the report - those children were just cast to the wind, left to their own devices. Nobody cared about them.
'And I am talking about the people at the top of the police and at social services. The chief constable, assistant chief constables, head of social services, the people who knew the facts, who knew the truth and they chose to bury the truth. That, in my opinion, is unforgivable.'
The Greater Manchester force has been accused of 'covering up' the historic child sex abuse in south Manchester over claims they didn't want to be accused of racism.
The 145-page report slams the authorities for failing to protect victims from their perpetrators and claims officers were 'aware of sensitive community issues' and the 'incitement of racial hatred in the area at that time.
Mrs Oliver went on to claim that the oaths of integrity signed by chief constables - although she did not specify which - had 'gone out the window'.
She added: 'And the question I would raise is: why are those people not facing charges of misconduct in a public office? Where is the accountability?
'They should be put in front of a court of law in the same way I would be if I failed to investigate a criminal damage. These rapes were never recorded and that is a failure. And it isn't a mistake, it was a deliberate and intentional desire to bury the truth.'
She said phase two of the review, which will look at the Operation Span police investigation into grooming in Rochdale - on which she was also a detective - would 'find the same cover ups, the same failures. This is a pattern.'
Its first phase focused in particular on Augusta - prompted by allegations of failure made by Mrs Oliver, whom Andy Burnham today said had been 'vindicated'.