'Vile and wicked' men who abused girls in Huddersfield jailed for total of 45 years

The men were sentenced at Leeds Crown Court.
The men were sentenced at Leeds Crown Court.

Five men who sexually exploited young girls in Huddersfield have been given jail sentences of up to 14 years by a judge who said their abuse was "vile and wicked" and "defies understanding".

A total of 27 men have now been convicted following West Yorkshire Police's Operation Tendersea investigation into child sexual exploitation in the town, with prison sentences totalling more than 300 years.

Judge Geoffrey Marson QC told the five men convicted last week: "The way these girls were treated defies understanding. This abuse was vile and wicked. None of you has expressed any remorse for what you did."

Jailing one 32-year-old defendant, who cannot be named for legal reasons, for 14 years, Judge Marson said: "You took the virginity of a particularly vulnerable 12-year-old and left her bleeding on the floor in the park."

He said this defendant also subjected another teenage girl to a "campaign of rape", abusing her on a regular basis in a Huddersfield park, using sleeping pills to subdue her.

The five men were convicted after the end of the fifth trial relating to Operation Tendersea. They were jailed for a total of 45 years, bringing the combined jail sentences after the five trials to 312 years.

Judge Marson told Leeds Crown Court that Operation Tendersea involved "a large number of men, principally Asian men", who have been charged in relation to "the grooming and sexual abuse of a large number of children".

The judge described how vulnerable girls were plied with drugs and alcohol and passed between men in Huddersfield.

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He said they thought they were being shown genuine affection but this was an illusion "deliberately created to enable predatory men to perpetrate gross sexual abuse for their own perverted gratification".

Judge Marson described how one terrified 12-year-old was targeted by the men who used her phone to locate her despite attempts to move her.

He said the men contacted the house of the girl and said they wanted to have sex with her. She was moved to another foster carer but was quickly located and there were 'repeated calls' from Asian men.

He said: "The girl was absolutely terrified and said that if the carer gave the sim card to the police 'they will find me and kill me'."

Umar Zaman, 31, and Samuel Fikru, 32, of William Street, Huddersfield, were each jailed for eight years on Friday (Nov 1) after they were convicted of two counts of rape.

The court heard Zaman has absconded and is believed to be in Pakistan.

A 32-year-old man convicted of five counts of rape was jailed for 14 years. Another 32-year-old found guilty of a single count of rape was jailed for eight years, and a 38-year-old man found guilty of attempted rape was jailed for seven years.

Their names cannot be reported for legal reasons.

A sixth defendant, Banaris Hussain, 36, also of William Street, was convicted of one count of rape, and will be sentenced on Monday.