Child sex abuse still rampant in Rotherham despite report on 1,000s of victims
Thousands of young girls are being groomed for sex in Rotherham on an “industrial scale,” but abuse victims say authorities have failed to get the situation under control for years.
The men are mainly from Mirpur, a city in the Kashmir region on the border between Pakistan and India. The situation came into the public spotlight after a chilling 2014 report by Professor Alexis Jay showed that at least 1,400 girls had been peddled for sex by Kashmiri gangs between 1997 and 2013, while police ignored many reports of abuse out of fear of being branded as racist.
However, a more recent report published by Professor John Drew in March said that the authorities had managed to deal with the situation, claiming that police were “adequately” coping with child grooming and failures were “isolated.”
Nevertheless, Express.co.uk spoke with activists, locals, and victims of abuse and discovered that the plight of many young girls in Rotherham is still the same. “I know a few girls who have come forward recently and been told they are being racist and I know a lot that won’t come forward and to be fair I can’t blame them.
Nothing has changed, not in the slightest. It’s still the same scale as before,” a girl identified as Lizzie, said. You hear about new girls being abused “on a daily basis,” she added.
Another victim called Ellie told Express.co.uk that “raping of white girls by these men is still going on.” “Some, I know, have had to wait months before they’re even asked to give a statement [to the police]. It’s shockingly bad still,” she added.
An investigation dubbed Operation Stovewood is currently looking into over 7,000 lines of inquiry.
However, the victims say they have seen little result from these efforts.
“What have the National Crime Agency been doing for the last 18 months with their 10 million pounds? No arrests yet? We’re feeling desperate and disheartened,” Ellie said.
There is other evidence supporting her statement: a father of a girl who was raped by the gangs told Express.co.uk that Kashmiri men from the same circle as her abuser appear outside their home and still intimidate the family.
“These groomers, these pedophiles are still running this town and the police are still doing what they were doing back in the day – nothing. Children in this town are at risk now and it’s appalling.”
Campaigner Anne Marie Waters, who conducted her own probe into the Rotherham sex attacks, said the child grooming is still thriving, adding that many victims are “too scared” to speak out.
Lawyer David Greenwood, who has represented dozens of girls abused by the gangs, said six “splinter groups” of pedophiles now exist in Rotherham.
Rotherham Council Leader Cllr Chris Read added, “Tragically there will always be criminals who want to hurt vulnerable young people, and we know children are still being exploited in communities up and down the country, including in Rotherham.”
The official data from South Yorkshire Police shows that 161 offences of the sort have been registered since last April, and 40 people have been charged with child sex offences. There are currently 99 ongoing probes.