Huddersfield grooming gang member has 'done a runner', jury told

Sajid Hussain, who was found guilty in his absence of two counts of rape
Sajid Hussain, who was found guilty in his absence of two counts of rape

Police are still hunting for a member of a Huddersfield grooming gang, who fled before he could be jailed for his part in the sickening abuse.

Sajid Hussain, who went by the nickname 'Fish', was a defendant in the second of three linked trials but disappeared four months ago.

The 33-year-old, of Grasmere Road, Huddersfield, was found guilty of two counts of rape in his absence and handed a 17-year jail term.

Judge Geoffrey Marson, QC, told the jury after the trial: "Sajid Hussain has, as they would say in the films, done a runner.”

A bench warrant has been issued for his arrest.

Hussain is among 16 members of the child grooming gang who have been given jail sentences totalling more than 200 years over the sexual exploitation of school girls in the West Yorkshire town.

Four others are awaiting sentence after being convicted of offences in a trial which ended earlier this month.

During three trials held throughout 2018, a court heard how teenage victims were often drugged before being passed around gang members to be sexually abused.

Other girls were trafficked to remote areas such as moorlands and reservoirs where they were threatened with violence if they did not comply with their abusers' sexual demands.

The abuse took place between 2004 and 2011.

Reporting restrictions on the trials were lifted on Friday.

Describing the abuse, Judge Marson, who presided over the first two trials, said: "The details were chilling. It was persistent and prolonged.

"Girls were raped, they were trafficked to isolated areas or to houses for the purpose of sexual abuse by those who took them or by others.

"If they didn't comply they were, on occasions, beaten.

"They were taken to so-called parties at houses where there would be older Asian men.

"On occasion drinks were spiked and many times these girls were rendered senseless.

"They would be taken to a room where, one by one, men would go and abuse these girls sexually."