Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Rotherham child sexual abuse: Six men jailed

Iqlak Yousaf, Nabeel Kurshid, Mohammed Imran Ali Akhtar, Asif Ali, Salah Ahmed El-Hakam and Tanweer Ali Image copyright South Yorkshire Police
Image caption Clockwise from top left: Iqlak Yousaf, Nabeel Kurshid, Mohammed Imran Ali Akhtar, Tanweer Ali, Salah Ahmed El-Hakam and Asif Ali were found guilty after a trial

Six men have been jailed for sexually exploiting young girls in Rotherham who were gang-raped and abused by them.

The men subjected the five girls to "degrading and violent" acts using drink, drugs and the "excitement of friendship" to lure them in.

A trial heard one girl had been sexually abused by "at least 100 Asian men" by the time she was 16, while another described being passed around.

They were sentenced to between 10 and 23 years at Sheffield Crown Court.

The men, who are all of British Pakistani heritage, targeted and groomed the girls, who were aged between 13 and 16, over seven years between 1998 and 2005.

In a victim impact statement, one of the girls said: "I feel like I'm constantly fighting to get justice for what they did to me. I hope the court realises these men have destroyed me.

"Some parts of me can never be fixed."

Sentencing them, Judge Sarah Wright told the men: "Each in your own way perpetrated, facilitated or encouraged the sexual abuse of these young girls.

"Each of the complainants in this case were groomed, coerced and intimidated. Each of them was groomed. Each of you, groomed.

"You can have been in no doubt that the complainants were vulnerable in the extreme."

Image caption Victims were assaulted and abused in locations across Rotherham, including Clifton Park

The victims described being taken to locations across Rotherham including a tip in Rawmarsh, a supermarket car park, Clifton Park and Ulley Country Park.

One girl, who was 14 at the time, was given cannabis and driven to Sherwood Forest by Nabeel Kurshid, Iqlak Yousaf and a third man.

The men then took turns raping her, warning her that if she did not do as she was told she would be left there.

Another said Mohammed Imran Ali Akhtar regularly threatened to dump her in remote locations if she did not have sex with him and his friends, and on one occasion, he abandoned her by the side of a motorway.

The same girl said Akhtar would take her to meet older Asian taxi drivers, who would then abuse her.

'Preyed on the vulnerable'

Another recounted how as Tanweer Ali raped her in the back of a car he told her: "It's better you just get it over and done with and then you can go back home".

Judge Wright added: "You were clearly not immature evidenced by the fact you all indulged in cynical manipulation and exploitation of your victims, which showed a maturity well beyond your chronological age.

"They continue to suffer considerable trauma and will continue to suffer throughout their lives as a result of your actions."

The convictions are the latest to come out of Operation Stovewood, run by the National Crime Agency (NCA).

It began in 2014 after a report found at least 1,400 children in Rotherham were the victims of abuse between 1997 and 2013.

Paul Williamson, from the NCA, said: "The men who have been sentenced today preyed on vulnerable young girls for their own satisfaction.

"They used violence and intimidation and believed they were untouchable by law enforcement."

The convicted men:

  • Mohammed Imran Ali Akhtar, 37, of Godstone Road, Rotherham, was found guilty of one count of rape, one count of aiding and abetting rape, three counts of indecent assault, one count of procuring a girl under 21 to have unlawful sexual intercourse with another, and one count of sexual assault, sentenced to 23 years.
  • Nabeel Kurshid, 35, of Weetwood Road, Rotherham, was found guilty of two counts of rape and one count of indecent assault, sentenced to 19 years.
  • Iqlak Yousaf, 34, Tooker Road, Rotherham, was found guilty of two counts of rape and two counts of indecent assault, sentenced to 20 years.
  • Tanweer Ali, 37, of Godstone Road, Rotherham, was found guilty of two counts of rape, two counts of indecent assault and one count of false imprisonment, sentenced to 14 years.
  • Salah Ahmed El-Hakam, 39, Tudor Close, Sheffield, was found guilty of one count of rape, sentenced to 15 years.
  • Asif Ali, 33, of Clough Road, Rotherham, was found guilty of two counts of indecent assault, sentenced to 10 years.

A seventh man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, will be sentenced at a later date after being convicted of two counts of rape.

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