Police in Britain reportedly turned a blind eye to almost 100 Muslim pedophiles of Pakistani heritage for fear of inciting racial hatred, a report commissioned by Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham has revealed.
At least 57 children described as “young white females” were identified as being involved in some way with sexual exploitation carried out by grooming gangs, which hooked their victims on drugs, groomed and sexually abused them.
The report, which followed the airing of a BBC documentary, The Betrayed Girls, documented repeated failures by the authorities to end the child sexual exploitation in Greater Manchester which appeared to be operating in “plain sight”.
The report focused on the death of 15-year-old, Victoria Agogla, who died in 2003 after being injected with a heroin overdose by a 50-year-old man. Prior to her death, Victoria was subjected to multiple threats, assaults, and serious sexual exploitation.
Although police and children’s social care workers were aware of Victoria’s situation, no investigation was conducted to protect her from harm. A man, who had been previously identified as her so-called “pimp” was given permission to visit her in her accommodation three times a week.
Two months prior to being killed, Victoria told her social worker that an older man was injecting her with heroin, however, no action was taken to ensure her safety.
According to the report, the man who injected Victoria with the deadly dose was later cleared of manslaughter at Manchester Crown Court. He admitted two offences of injecting the young girl with heroin and was jailed for three and a half years.
The Daily Mail reported, that officers were worried that arresting the perpetrators would result in “the incitement of racial hatred.”
An unnamed Greater Manchester Police detective constable involved in the arrest of a child sex offender who was not of Pakistani heritage was quoted by The Telegraph as saying: “What had a massive input was the offending target group were predominantly Asian males and we were told to try and get other ethnicities.”
Former GMP detective Maggie Oliver is now calling for the law to be changed so that senior officers can be charged with misconduct or malfeasance.
“Girls were lost to the wind,” she said. “What has been the cost of all these lives? We will never be able to put a number on how many lives have been lost.
“I want the law changing so there can be retrospective accountability for people whose duty it is to protect the vulnerable. It’s knowing and deliberate neglection of duty… [those who were involved] should be charged with gross misconduct – it’s criminal – where is the accountability?”
In 2014, BBC News reported that at least 1,400 children were subjected to appalling sexual exploitation in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013.
According to a report commissioned by Rotherham Borough Council, children as young as 11 were raped by multiple perpetrators, abducted, trafficked to other cities in England, beaten and intimidated.
The report found: “Several [council] staff described their nervousness about identifying the ethnic origins of perpetrators for fear of being thought as racist; others remembered clear direction from their managers not to do so.”
At the time, BBC Political Editor, James Vincent said the scale of the report was staggering.
“It lays out how Rotherham Council and the police knew about the level of child exploitation in the town, but didn’t do anything about it”
“They either didn’t believe what they were being told, played it down, or were too nervous to act,” he said.
One of the victims the BBC refers to as “Isabel” said, “I think because the police were aware and social services were aware and he knew that and they still didn’t stop him it I think it encouraged him.
“It almost became like a game to him,” she said. “He was untouchable.”
Part 1 of the assurance review of child sexual exploitation in Greater Manchester can be viewed here.