In some ways the Rochdale Child Sexual Abuse Scandal has had some positive effect on public awareness and official recognition that there is indeed a problem within our communities.
Alarmingly there is still a reluctance on the part of the authorities to recognise the fact that there is a disproportionate involvement of Pakistani Muslim males, with their attitudes towards young white girls, seeing them as ”easy meat” and ”fair game”.
Child Sexual Abuse is not exclusively a Pakistani Muslim issue as is evident in the various ”Establishment scandals”, but these should not detract from the cold hard facts concerning Muslim men of Pakistani heritage.
Figures show from 18 of the recent trials it can be noted that of the 56 people found guilty of crimes including rape, child abduction, indecent assault and sex with a child, 53 were Asian. Of those, 50 were Muslim and a majority were members of the British Pakistani community. Most of the victims have been white, although in one case several Bangladeshi Muslim girls were also abused.
White males who are predators on the street tend to work alone, though they also prey in internet grooming rings. Whereas Muslims generally operate in gangs and the girls are ”passed around” in the Muslim community.
Former Home Secretary Jack Straw raised the issue in 2011 – claiming that “there is a specific problem which involves Pakistani heritage men… who target vulnerable young white girls” seeing them as “easy meat” for sexual abuse – he found himself in political trouble. He was criticised by one fellow MP for “stereotyping a whole community”.
“Police and social services have been accused of fuelling a culture of silence which has allowed hundreds of young white girls to be exploited by Asian men for sex,” the Daily Mail has said. “Experts claim the statistics represent a mere fraction of a ‘tidal wave’ of offending in counties across the Midlands and the north of England which has been going on for more than a decade.”
It reported that one senior policeman, in 2012, Detective Chief Inspector Alan Edwards of West Mercia Police, had called for ”an end to the ‘damaging taboo’ connecting on-street grooming with race”, quoting him as saying that “these girls are being passed around and used as meat”.
Reports of child sex abuse have risen by more than 60% in the last four years, new figures suggest.
Freedom of Information data obtained by shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper show there were 8,892 reports to police forces in 2014, up from 5,557 in 2011, according to the Guardian newspaper.
But over the same period the number of arrests for child sex offences fell by 9%, from 3,511 in 2011 to 3,208 last year.
Ms Cooper said the scale of the issue was a “national scandal”.
She said: “This isn’t a problem from the past. It is a growing problem the Government should be confronting right now.
“Victims of child sex abuse are being let down when alongside a 60% increase in reports there has been a 9% drop in arrests for child sex abuse, as well as falling prosecutions and convictions for child abuse offences as the police are unable to keep up.”
The data, based on responses from 33 of 41 forces in England and Wales, showed South Yorkshire Police with the biggest rise in reported cases, the paper said, with a 577% increase from 74 in 2011 to 501 in 2014.
But arrests for the offence by that force rose from 50 four years ago to 57 last year. Meanwhile, Thames Valley Police made 191 arrests in relation to child sex abuse – up from just 13 in 2011.
Alan Wardle, NSPCC head of policy and public affairs, said: “In recent years there has been a huge increase in awareness of child sexual abuse and it’s good that more people are coming forward.