Manchester

Rochdale child-sex trial: Accused man denies being a pimp

Top row l-r: Abdul Rauf, Kabeer Hassan and Abdul Qayyum. Bottom row l-r: Liaquat Shah, Qamar Shahzad, Mohammed Amin and Mohammed Sajid
All the men deny conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with children under the age of 16

A man accused of being part of a child-sex ring in Greater Manchester, has denied being a pimp and said that one of his accusers was "the devil".

At Liverpool Crown Court, Abdul Aziz, 41, of Armstrong Hurst Close, Rochdale, denies having sexual relations with any of the alleged victims.

He called on the prosecution to present "proof" of his wrongdoing.

The 11 men on trial all deny conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with children under 16.

Taxi driver Mr Aziz spoke with the aid of an interpreter and denied using his cab to transport underage girls to other men who would use them for sex and then pay him.

Rachel Smith, prosecuting, said he took £30 or £40 from men when "he made" one 15-year-old alleged victim "have sex with them".

She said he was working with another teenage girl, who he told police was his "best friend", and who was also "earning money by making" the 15-year-old girl have sex with men at different flats and houses in the area.

'Best friend'

Mr Aziz, a married father-of-three, said: "No, that's not true. No such thing happened. She is lying and lying again. There's no truth in it. I have not taken her to any flat, to any house."

Later he said the victim had once tried to blackmail him and said she "was the devil".

"She is responsible for us being here today," he added.

He then accused the prosecution of "helping" the victim.

When he was asked about his relationship with the girl who allegedly helped him pimp out other young victims, he said: "I had no sexual relationship with her. If you do have any proof then show it."

He said she was just a customer and a friend.

He said she was not his girlfriend and went back on his earlier assertions when he was interviewed by the police that she was his "best friend".

He also denied raping a third girl in his taxi and asked the prosecution to present DNA evidence if they had any.

Earlier, the defendant Kabeer Hassan, 24, of Lacrosse Avenue, Oldham, Greater Manchester, denied raping one of the girls upstairs in a takeaway.

'Passed around'

He said: "No, I never had sex with [her]. I never touched her. I wouldn't touch her with a barge pole. I used to keep myself to myself. Simple as that."

The prosecution claims that five girls were "shared" and "passed around" for sex by the men.

The court heard that some of the girls - aged between 13 and 15 - were raped and physically assaulted and one was forced to have sex with "several men in a day, several times a week".

It was said that the abuse was centred around two takeaways in Heywood, Rochdale, but that girls were also driven to various houses and flats in the North West and Bradford areas.

Kabeer Hassan, 24; Abdul Aziz, 41; Abdul Rauf, 43; Mohammed Sajid, 35; Adil Khan, 42; Abdul Qayyum, 43; Mohammed Amin, 44; Qamar Shahzad, 29; Liaquat Shah, 41 and Hamid Safi, 22, all deny conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with children under the age of 16.

  • Mr Hassan, of Lacrosse Avenue, Oldham, and Mr Shahzad, of Tweedale Street, Rochdale, also deny rape.
  • Mr Aziz, of Armstrong Hurst Close, Rochdale, denies two counts of rape and one allegation of trafficking for sexual exploitation.
  • Mr Khan, of Oswald Street, and Mr Rauf, of Darley Road, both in Rochdale, have also pleaded not guilty to trafficking for sexual exploitation.
  • Mr Sajid, of Jepheys Street, Rochdale, denies trafficking, two counts of rape and one allegation of sexual activity with a child.
  • Mr Amin, of Falinge Road, Rochdale, denies sexual assault.
  • Mr Shah and Mr Safi, both of Kensington Street, Rochdale, each denied two counts of rape and Mr Safi has also pleaded not guilty to trafficking.

The trial continues.

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