Rochdale child sex trafficker Adil Khan fights deportation

Adil Khan Image copyright GMP
Image caption Adil Khan is appealing against a Home Office decision to strip him of UK citizenship

A member of child sex grooming gang who got a 15-year-old girl pregnant has claimed he is innocent as he fights deportation from the UK.

Adil Khan, 46, maintained there was a "big story" behind his conviction for a series of child sex offences in Rochdale, Greater Manchester.

Khan was jailed for eight years in 2012 alongside eight other men who exploited girls as young as 13.

He is appealing against a decision to strip him of UK citizenship.

Khan was convicted at Liverpool Crown Court of two counts of engaging a child in sexual activity and one of trafficking a girl for sex within the UK.

Now out of jail on licence, he appeared before a First Tier Immigration Tribunal, sitting at Manchester Crown Court.

The court heard he had got one 15-year-old pregnant then passed another girl of the same age on to other men for sex, using violence to coerce her.

But under questioning by Vinesh Mandalia, representing the Home Office, Khan maintained his innocence.

'Repugnant to society'

Speaking through a court interpreter, he claimed there was "a big story" behind his conviction.

He added: "We respect the jury but there's so many reasons behind that."

The tribunal heard Khan had previously launched an appeal against his conviction, but it had been rejected by the High Court.

Home Secretary Theresa May's decision to strip him of UK citizenship is the first stage in the deportation process.

Mr Mandalia said deportation would not render Khan stateless as he retains Pakistani nationality.

He described Khan's offending as "repugnant to society" and said it would be "entirely proportionate" for him to "face the consequences".

The court heard Khan had been granted British citizenship after marrying a Pakistani woman who had already been given the right to remain in the UK.

They have a seven-year-old son, and if his appeal fails he can lodge a further appeal against deportation on the grounds of a breach of his human rights, the right to a family life, under Article Eight of the Human Rights Act.

Three judges will decide on Khan's appeal, as well as on appeals by three other gang members, including ringleader Shabir Ahmed.

The appeal made by Abdul Aziz, another member of the Rochdale grooming gang, was adjourned until 23 March.

The tribunal judges have reserved their decision on the appeals of Khan, Shabir Ahmed and another man, Abdul Rauf.

A decision is expected next month.

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