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Abuse of hundreds of girls as young as ten covered up by police and social services

(259 Posts)
edam Mon 24-Sep-12 14:29:51

today's Times - sadly behind a paywall but you can see the first par here - has a major investigation into appalling, widespread organised rape and abuse of girls in South Yorkshire.

Not only did police and social services fail to help the girls, let alone prosecute the offenders, they actually charged victims and their parents - one girl was charged with using drugs, while the men in the room with her went free, while one father who tried to get his daughter back was charged with racial harassment, ffs. AND his poor daughter, who had been drugged, was charged with assault. Another parent was charged with breach of the peace, another girl - only 13 - was arrested for a public order offence and convicted, while the men went free.

It beggars belief. The Times has seen more than 200 confidential documents from Rotherham detailing the crimes which were often not investigated - even though police and social services knew full well who the perpetrators were. But they were more concerned with hushing up the heritage of the offenders - Pakistani, Kurdish, Iranian and Kosovan gangs and families - than investigating hideous crimes.

In one case, police in Bristol rescued two girls who had been kidnapped but South Yorkshire police (where they lived) didn't even question them.

Neither the police nor the council apologised, btw. Oh no, the council just says ofsted think they are great and 'some work with individuals did not lead to court cases for a variety of reasons'. S Yorks Police say now they have eight officers looking into child sexual exploitation and they are 'a leading force in safeguarding vulnerable children'.

achillea Fri 28-Sep-12 14:55:30

I think they should put them in virtual solitary confinement by preventing them from ever owning a phone line, mobile or terrestrial, or having internet access. The bad ones should also be disallowed a driving licence.

Should be cheaper than prison and probably far more of a punishment.

Extrospektiv Fri 28-Sep-12 15:07:40

yes edam, know all about RAD & that mad and dangerous woman, went on at alder hey too but they tried to cover it up under the organ retention scandal. As much respect as I have for the families involved in that, they only had to deal with their DEAD kids' bodies being misused, and not in any sexual way. The parents called satanists had living children removed for no reason and sometimes traumatised for life, so their experience must be seen as worse.

RAD SCUM= NOT radical feminists (who aren't scum in the most part)
It is the people who subjected children to reflex anal dilatation (RAD) who should be called RADscum.

Reclaim another term from the anti-feminists, the transjacktivists ("1 in 300 people are trans, let's derail conversations about things which only or largely affect female bodied people, oh that not so important cisprivileged 51% of the world") " or "be a rich white woman and say prostitution, porn, S/M and beauty standards are so EMPOWERING! WHOO!" fauxminists.

JumpingJetFlash Fri 28-Sep-12 15:23:14

Achillea - it's important that you make a distinction between Rochdale social services and the care companies that operate around Rochdale. They aren't the same at all and in fact have a MUCH better record of protecting/ supporting their chn. Also the idea that the chn were only in danger as they were sent up north is not supported in fact as this is a nationwide issue not a regional issue. rear same issues happen in London too.

For the record, I don't work for any of these companies AND am disgusted by the lack of action that takes place by the police and local services all over the country (these cases are the tip of the iceberg!)

KarlosKKrinkelbeim Fri 28-Sep-12 15:31:37

You may recall West Yorkshire police got Channel 4 not to broadcast a documentary about this sort of crime in Bradford at the time of the 2005 general election, as they were concerned it might inflame pro-BNP sympathies. Quite when it became the job of the police to influence voting pappterns was never made clear. But this sort of thing has been going on for years and it is only brave people like Ann Cryer (and she was brave, because she was risking alienating part of her constituency) who have said to the relevant communities that they need to look at why this is happening, and their men think it is OK to behave like this.

Extrospektiv Fri 28-Sep-12 15:55:01

Yorskhire Police have A LOT to answer for down the years

ask my relatives in Liverpool (I posted on the Hillsboro AIBU threads with fulminant YANBUs to all the questions about justice for the 96)

and now throwing raped children under the bus for the sake of community cohesion, engaging in un-British censorship and more. This is more likely to make me hate the police and the rule of law than it is to make me vote BNP.

If ignorant people want to vote for fascism, let them. They will never run this country. They might have had a chance if WWII and the Holocaust and the preceding 20 years' Rise of the Dictators in Europe hadn't happened, and if decades of anti-racism went out the window in one fell swoop.

edam Fri 28-Sep-12 15:55:22

Good point, Karlos. Was outrageous that Channel Four pulled that documentary.

achillea Fri 28-Sep-12 15:58:13

Jumping - all children living in Rochdale are ultimately in the care of Rochdale childrens services - the buck stops with them. They need to watch the care homes more carefully and ensure CP procedures are followed, this is their responsibility.

It is very possible that they resent the fact that their services are being stretched and it could be enabling a laissez faire attitude among staff. But that's my cynical assumption, not necessarily fact.

achillea Fri 28-Sep-12 15:59:08

(All looked after children, obvs children living with their parents are in the care of their parents.)

KarlosKKrinkelbeim Fri 28-Sep-12 15:59:32

It was broadcast on a later occasion, and made very sorry viewing.
I know people who have prosecuted a number of these cases and what is very sad is that the girls always say how they thought the men responsible were their friends or that they loved them. They are children with so little love in their lives that they need very scant attention to throw their lot in with these men who then subject them to the most appalling abuse. It is a fundamental misunderstanding of how damaged mentally and emotionally these children are to say that because they don;t run away, or appear to be willing to go back, they are somehow freely consenting.

Extrospektiv Fri 28-Sep-12 16:05:21

This has been going on for 25 or so years. Widespread rings of men exploiting children for prostitution, centered on childrens' homes that either choose not to bother safeguarding them ("she's just a naughty 13 year old girl selling herself, not our problem, she's probably lying about being raped anyway") or have abusers/active helpers of abusers as staff members.

This story is from 1993 and tracks it to the mid eighties when benefits were cut and unemployment increased, leading to more children in care when their parents couldn't afford to look after them or collapsed mentally under stress.

edam Fri 28-Sep-12 16:06:01

Indeed, Karlos.

Achillea, I thought one of the problems with SS depts dumping children in distant locations with cheap property prices such as Rochdale or Margate was that it's the original SS dept that is responsible for them, not SS in their new town. Very unlikely that a Hackney SW is going to know what on earth is going on with a Hackney child who is in some run-down part of Margate next door to a bail hostel housing sex offenders.

Kent CC told me that London (or other outside councils) don't even tell them when children are sent to Margate, so local SWs don't even know these kids are there, let alone anything about them. And the police have complained that SS refuse to tell them where children's homes are located... (dunno how true that is or what's the cause but I've seen it said repeatedly).

Extrospektiv Fri 28-Sep-12 16:07:54

achillea-"looked after children"- specifically section 31 LACs
section 20 LACs still have legal responsibility shared between the LA and their parents, often being with extended family, so the family has more responsibility in that case.

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Fri 28-Sep-12 16:21:26

What a fucking sick and sorry state of affairs.

I am speechless sad

MamaMary Fri 28-Sep-12 16:24:23

I am chilled to the bone to read this. Only read DM article. I feel physically sick.

The police and Social Services should be held to account. How can they sleep in their beds at night knowing that they allowed, even encouraged, child abuse on a mass scale to take place? I hope they are sued by the girls' lawyers and they get all the negative publicity they deserve.

So many facets of evil. The local MP, Denis McShane, described the situation as 'pure evil' - sums it up quite well.

edam Fri 28-Sep-12 16:25:43

I know, it's beyond shocking, isn't it? That such a thing could happen today, in a civlised country with the rule of law, where everyone is supposed to be aware of child abuse... astonishing.

MamaMary Fri 28-Sep-12 16:36:56

Jack Straw's comments yesterday are interesting - copying from Daily Telegraph. He does not shy away from the race issue:

" terms of group grooming there is an ethnic dimension which typically is of Asian men on white girls.
"And that is an issue which has to be faced and addressed within the Asian community about what’s going on there.
“That kind of leads to a sense of denial by them that all this is going on.
“These are small communities so people will have a rough idea that people are abusing white girls in this way.
“That has to be dealt with there as well as obviously with much more effective police and social services action.”

Why didn't he do anything about it when in power, one wonders?

JumpingJetFlash Fri 28-Sep-12 16:48:17

The LA that places maintains responsibility to a large extent. You're still making the assumption that its the private care home that are letting the kids down but that's not true. Many of the chn groomed are in LA care and in fact one of the chn that finally managed to bring this to light was in a private care home and the staff involved refused to let it be buried and supported the girl in her evidence process. That's not to say that no child in a private home was ever endangered by these groups - sadly they were.

One of the main reasons chns homes locations are not regularly known is the NIMBY effect. In my local area a chns home functioned for years successfully (for the child in a long term placement) until the neighbours found out. Cue a string of complaints about how their own chn were endangered by "these chn" and a local MP/ media involved. The result home closed and placement collapsed for the kid involved. Neighbours were pleased though :-/

Plus these groups of paedophiles that prey on vulnerable are all over country - not limited to "cheap" areas like margate and the northwest.

Not convinced that the local police and SW don't know about the kids being placed as they have regular meetings etc - sounds more like trying to shift blame.

edam Fri 28-Sep-12 16:54:11

Jumping - but NIMBY neighbours is no reason for SS to hide the locations from the police.

Cheap property prices isn't a judgement, it's just a fact that the sheer volume of children's homes is greatest in areas such as Margate or Rochdale where you can get big houses for relatively small amounts, making running a children's home far more profitable for the operators. You clearly work in this area and I'm sure there are many fine people who do, but what I've been told by councils is that you end up with a concentration of homes and children in one place, where it may be easier for gangs to target large numbers of children. And also other statutory facilities such as bail hostels, which may house sex offenders. There is a chain of multiple factors, all of which increase the chance of children being abused.

BigFatLegsInWoolyTIghts Fri 28-Sep-12 17:06:26

It's because in the cultures that these men come from, some men believe that white girls are fair game because they are allowed a lot of freedom in terms of what they wear and where they go.

These men look on these girls as less than them....and so think they are "reaping what they sow" by dressing in revealing clothing and being out alone.

That's it. The police won't say it...the community leaders won't say it...but WHY else are white girls being victimised by men from these cultures?

I don't care who says that's a racist viewpoint. It's not...I'm not racist.

JumpingJetFlash Fri 28-Sep-12 17:06:36

Edam there is NO way the police don't know where they are - I'm sorry but that's simply an attempt to cover that the don't treat people equally. Also they know far more info about the private care homes in their area.

I actually don't work in that area but do know quite a few people that do/ did and did live in Rochdale for a few years - this issue was happening in the mid 90s which is why I know that the problem has existed for nearly 2 decades and is LA and not private homes centred. The SS and police have buried their heads for too long and I'm glad that it has come to light FINALLY but do worry that certain areas are being highlighted as if this is localised - unfortunately it's not :-/

I do object to the phrase "dumped" used as I think that denigrates the work the staff try and do with these chn. (Which of course does not confer saintdom on them as with any area of work there ate always some that aren't the best!)

JumpingJetFlash Fri 28-Sep-12 17:09:18

Big - at least one of the guys in Rochdale was also jailed gor abusing Asian girls - a paedophile is a paedophile regardless of race!

BigFatLegsInWoolyTIghts Fri 28-Sep-12 17:47:28

2 Asian girls. And how many white?

achillea Fri 28-Sep-12 18:54:20

Edam - very interesting about statutory privatised services being concentrated in areas where there is a density of large properties with lots of rooms that are comparatively cheap. This means as you said, that you will also get the privatised ex-offenders home around the corner from the childrens home.

I still don't understand where the accountability lies - with the new council or with the council where the child was originally from, that has outsourced the service.

woollytights it is no surprise that Asian paedophiles like their girls with snowy white skin, but race or culture really has nothing to do with it. The gangs do it because the can, and if the childrens homes were in a different area the gangs would be a different ethnicity (someone has already said this, can't remember who).

This notion that any ethnic communities can be some kind of mediation service between politicians and paedophile gangs is highly suspect. Jack Straw needs to watch his words.

BigFatLegsInWoolyTIghts Fri 28-Sep-12 19:17:53

But why aren't the white paedophiles doing it in this area then? If, as you say the children's homes are close to offenders rehab places...surely there aren't only Asian offenders or residents in the area?

I don't think Asian paedophiles would be fussy about the skin colour of their victims''s just that they look down on these white girls.

Rowanhart Fri 28-Sep-12 20:05:28

I've been looking at the reaction around the relationship between the teacher and his pupil this week and wondering why the difference in level of reaction.

And it's simple really. She's a nice middle class girl from a nice family. And so she has value and the police react more. Even though this is clearly consensual (doesn't make it any less wrong..)

But is a bigger deal than a 13 year old found semi naked in a house full of men, screaming hysterically? So why was she arrested for drunk and disorderly compared to Megan who is seen as a victim.

The more I think about this the more it is is clear this isn't just a race issue but a class issue. And until someone starts coming out and saying that (ahem MUmsnet HQ) the longer before any real change can be afforded.

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