Published On: Sun, Aug 31st, 2014 on 3:50 pm

Groups ‘exploiting’ Rotherham grooming inquiry, claim Muslim council

Rotherham Child Exploitation 2010

A spokesperson for the Leeds Muslim Council has said that far-right groups are exploiting news of how over 1,000 children were subjected to sexual exploitation in Rotherham.

Reports from 2002 to 2006 have highlighted the extent of child exploitation and links to wider criminality over the period of 16 years but showed nothing was done, with the findings either suppressed or ignored.

Police failed to act on the crimes and treated the victims with contempt and deemed that they were “undesirables” not worthy of protection, an inquiry team was told.

The team examined most of the victims being white children under the age of 16 and the perpetrators named in the files as “Asian males”.

A spokesperson for the Leeds Muslim Council, Haji Muhammad, has said that groups, particularly the far-right, have already begun targeting Islam for the perpetrators actions.

He said: “Some groups are exploiting the Rotherham inquiry and are linking the depraved actions of the perpetrators to Islam.

“It is rather the lack of spirituality in the perpetrators that could be said to be one of the key factors in them committing such grossly sickening and deplorable acts.”

The focus on Rotherham followed the jailing of five Asian men in 2010 after they were found guilty of grooming teenage girls for sex.

These men, described as sexual predators by the judge, groomed teenage girls and had sex with them in cars and parks.

Far-right group Britain First, whose members invaded mosques in Bradford in May, has already held a protest against what they describe as ‘Muslim grooming’.

The English Defence League (EDL) is also planning to hold a protest in Rotherham on 13 September.

Leader of Leeds Makkah Masjid, Imam Qari Asim MBE, warned: “It is not credible to blame a whole community for the acts of a tiny minority of criminals; such an agenda of hate and division will only deflect the attention from the real issue that we do not have a robust system in place to protect the vulnerable.

“Victims of sexual exploitation come from all classes, religions and backgrounds. Many of the victims of this sexual abuse were young girls of Asian background.

“It is equally abysmal if members of the British Pakistani community were aware that some individuals or gangs were exploiting children and young girls and they failed to report them to the relevant authorities.”

About the Author

Hasan Faridi

- Hasan is the founder and editor-in chief of the Yorkshire Standard. A BA Hons graduate from the University of Huddersfield, he has over four years of experience in newspapers, magazines and radio.

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