Next week Deputy Children's Commissioner Sue Berelowitz will publish a major report into child abuse
An official inquiry into child sex gangs will fail to highlight the targeting of white girls by Pakistani men. Instead the year-long Government-backed investigation will say that child sex abuse is a problem caused by men of all backgrounds in towns and cities across the country. The findings of the inquiry by Sue Berelowitz, the Deputy Children's Commissioner for England, are likely to anger ministers and provoke disbelief among those who have observed and investigated cases of abuse of teenage girls in towns in Lancashire and Yorkshire.
The inquiry into child sexual exploitation by gangs was launched more than a year ago, but its investigations became more urgent this summer following the convictions of nine men in Rochdale for their roles in a child sex ring which groomed young white girls for sex. The men, eight of Pakistani origin and one from Afghanistan, received jail sentences of between four and 19 years. In September, police documents revealed that in Rotherham officers ignored evidence of large-scale sex crime by 'networks of Asian males exploiting young white females’, which dated back more than a decade.
As long ago as 2002, Home Office inquiries suggested that police were failing to question or investigate Asian abusers while treating their victims as 'deviant and promiscuous'. Education Secretary Michael Gove said in May that Miss Berelowitz should not let her inquiries be swayed by questions of prejudice and should instead 'ask tough questions about cultural background'. However her first report, to be published next week, will argue that the problem lies with men from all ethnic backgrounds. The findings are expected to reflect opinions that were given by Miss Berelowitz to MPs this summer, when she said child sexual exploitation was happening across the country.
Her report has met an unenthusiastic response in Whitehall, where one source said: 'It is important we don't take a politically correct approach and pretend there is not a real problem here. Obviously abuse has been carried out by men from all sorts of ethnic backgrounds. 'But that doesn't mean we cannot say there is an issue about groups of Pakistani men systematically targeting young white girls.'
A spokesman for Miss Berelowitz said there would be no comment on the report until it is published next week. But a senior political figure with long experience of trying to combat sex gangs said there is a specific problem with groups of young Pakistani men, and that Miss Berelowitz would be wrong to ignore it. Ann Cryer, who stood down as Labour MP for Keighley in West Yorkshire at the last election, played a central role in bringing a gang of abusers to justice in 2004. 'Abuse and sexual exploitation is a universal problem, especially with white men who groom targets through the internet,' she said. 'But there is another problem in some towns with Pakistani men.’
'This is connected with parents in Lancashire and Yorkshire who have the intention of marrying young men to cousins from Pakistan whom they have never met. This means the men look for other partners. Older white women are not interested, because they know it is never going to end in wedding bells, and they dare not look for girls in their own community. So they look for young white girls.' Mrs Cryer added: 'I believe there is a problem and the solution is for the elders of their community to take action. The point is not that they are being picked on because they are Muslim, but that the way they are behaving is un-Islamic.'
Source: Daily Mail UK