Victims’ trust in police “is broken”

Lesley McLean
Lesley McLean
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The number of complaints about the way police officers in Rotherham handled child sex abuse complaints is “evidence of the breakdown in trust between victims and those supposed to be protecting them”, a Yorkshire charity has claimed.

Investigators looking at how the police treated complaints of child sexual exploitation in the South Yorkshire borough said today they are now working to identify more than 100 officers.

The Independent Police Complaint Commission (IPCC) is continuing to examine police conduct exactly a year on from the publication of the Jay Report, which shocked the nation with the scale of child rape, trafficking and grooming it uncovered in Rotherham.

Professor Alexis Jay’s report described how more than 1,400 children were sexually exploited by gangs of mainly Asian males in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013.

And it was scathing about a culture among police and council officials which ignored the industrial scale of abuse, instead treating the victims of CSE as troublesome teenagers.

The IPCC says it has received 47 referrals from South Yorkshire Police since the publication of the Jay Report, involving more than 100 allegations.

A spokeswoman said: “Analysis of all the referrals has so far identified more than 60 officers.

“Further assessments are being carried out to establish the specific allegations against these individuals to determine what further actions are needed.

“Work is ongoing to identify more than 100 officers who are referenced in the referrals but are unnamed.”

Lesley McLean, manager for independent charity Victim Support in Yorkshire, said: “The scale of complaints about police officers is evidence of the breakdown in trust between victims and those supposed to be protecting them. It’s critical there is independent support available to victims who have suffered these appalling crimes.”

It emerged today that a 26-year-old man from Rotherham has been handed a ten-year court order restricting his contact with children under 16.

A District Judge placed the Sexual Harm Prevention Order on Mudasser Hussain, from the Holmes area. The orders are granted to protect people from serious sexual harm when there is not enough evidence for an arrest.

Under the order, Hussain cannot have unsupervised contact of any kind with children under 16 unless certain criteria are met.