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9 May 2012, 11:36
A judge has said a gang of men who sexually exploited young girls in Rochdale were driven by ``lust and greed''.
The men were convicted yesterday of conspiracy to engage in sexual activity with children under the age of 16 and other offences. Judge Gerald Clifton told them: ``All of you treated the victims as though they were worthless and beyond respect.''
The man seen as the ringleader, a 59-year-old who cannot be named for legal reasons, was jailed for a total of 19 years for conspiracy, two counts of rape, aiding and abetting a rape, sexual assault and a count of trafficking within the UK for sexual exploitation. He didn't attend the sentencing hearing and offered no mitigation, but his lawyer said:
"He believes his convictions have nothing to do with justice but result from the faith and the race of the defendants and that society failed the girls in this case before the girls even met them and now that failure is being blamed on a weak minority group."
Takeaway worker 25 year old Kabeer Hassan from Oldham, Greater Manchester, was jailed for nine years for rape and three years, concurrently, for the conspiracy conviction. The 59-year-old ordered the first victim to have sex with Hassan as a ``treat'' for his birthday. He raped the girl, who was then aged 15.
41 year old Taxi driver Abdul Aziz from Rochdale was sentenced to nine years for conspiracy and nine years, concurrently, for trafficking for sexual exploitation. The married dad-of-three took over from the 59-year-old as the main trafficker of the victims and was paid by various men to supply girls for sex.
Married dad-of-five 43 year old Abdul Rauf from Rochdale, was jailed for six years for conspiracy and six years, concurrently, for trafficking for sexual exploitation. The religious studies teacher at a local mosque asked a 15-year-victim if she had any younger friends and would drive some of the girls to other men, who would use them for sex, despite knowing they were underage.
35 year old Mohammed Sajid, 35 from Rochdale, was sentenced to 12 years for rape, six years for conspiracy, one year for trafficking and six years, all concurrent, for sexual activity with a child. He would regularly ply victims with alcohol before having sex with them at his flat, where groups of men would gather and ``pass around'' the girls. He will be deported back to Pakistan on release.
42 year old Adil Khan from Rochdale, was given eight years for conspiracy and eight years, concurrently, for trafficking for sexual exploitation. Khan, who is married with one child, fathered the child of a 13-year-old victim who believed she was in love with him.
45 year old Mohammed Amin from Rochdale, was sentenced to five years for conspiracy and 12 months, concurrently, for sexual assault. He was a driver for Eagle Taxis for 14 years and was known as ``Car Zero''. He is married with school aged children.
44 year old Abdul Qayyum from Rochdale, was jailed for five years for conspiracy. He was a driver for Streamline Taxis in Middleton, and known by the name ``Tiger''.
22 year old Illegal immigrant Hamid Safi was jailed for four years for conspiracy and one year, concurrently, for trafficking. He sneaked into the UK on a lorry in 2008 and claimed to have fled Afghanistan because his uncle was murdered by the Taliban. And will be deported back to Afghanistan following his sentence.
The hearing was taking place amid tight security with police standing guard in the courtroom and around the building amid fears of a large demonstration or disruption by far-right groups. In the event less than a dozen BNP members gathered outside the court building holding placards and shouting towards television crews and press photographers.