Socialist Worker

Rotherham trial hears police officer and councillor did deal with accused abuser

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2486

Sheffield Crown Court

Sheffield Crown Court


A police officer and a councillor were involved in a deal to help an alleged child abuser escape arrest, a court has heard.

Five men and two women are on trial at Sheffield Crown Court. They deny over 60 offences relating to child sexual exploitation between 1987 and 2003.

The court saw police interviews from 2013 with alleged victim Girl J last week.

In it she described beginning a relationship with defendant Arshid Hussain, known as Ash, when she was 14.

Girl J said she felt in love with Hussain but that he became violent as the relationship continued. She said she had told him her age and that he often picked her up from school.

The court heard that she began to go missing from home to be with Hussain and that her parents reported this to the police.

She said that one time she was missing with him a deal was done whereby she would be handed over and Hussain would not be arrested.

She said PC Ali, who she and Hussain "dealt with all the time", helped arrange the deal.

The court heard that Girl J was dropped off at a petrol station in Ferham, Rotherham. She said there were "quite a lot of police officers" there.

Suits

Girl J said she got in a car with two men in suits in the front and was driven home. She thought one was called "Akhtar" and was a Rotherham councillor and "relative to Ash".
Girl J said, "They said to me if he dropped me off at the petrol station he wouldn’t be prosecuted."

The court heard that Girl J got pregnant by Hussain aged 14 but had an abortion after he said he would be sent to prison if she continued the pregnancy.

The jury also heard Girl J got pregnant for a second time aged 15 and had the child.
Girl J said she was confused because "police caught me all the time with Ash".

She claimed that on one occasion she was upstairs in a house having sex with Hussain when police broke the door down.

Girl J said she tried to hide under the bed but that an officer saw her and addressed her by name.

She said she was arrested as she had a "truncheon" in her bag and "they didn't do anything with Ash".

The court heard that police would go to Hussain's house and give him a "heads up" that police were looking for Girl J. "That happened quite a lot," she said.

The court also heard that Girl J's dad confiscated her phones to try and stop her contact with Hussain and found her diary. "He handed it all over to the police," she said.

The trial continues.


Girl J tells the court, 'He was an adult and I was a child, so I wasn't equal at all'

Arshid Hussain accepts that he is the father of a child conceived when Girl J was 15, a court has heard. Hussain denies charges of rape, indecent assault and abduction of a girl in relation to Girl J.

Hussain’s barrister, Stephen Uttley, cross-examined Girl J on Friday of last week.

She accepted that she told Hussain she was 16 when she first met him. “He knew a few hours afterwards that I wasn’t 16,” she said.

The court has heard that Girl J became pregnant by Hussain when she was 14 and had an abortion.

Uttley asked why she denied that Hussain was the father at the time.

Girl J said Hussain told her to deny it because he’d “get sent to prison”. She said she denied any involvement with Hussain to protect him.

Uttley suggested that Girl J had been an equal in the “relationship”. Girl J replied, “No—he was an adult and I was a child, so I wasn’t equal at all.”

Girl J said Hussain “tried to kill me” and “got me doing a lot of criminal things”. The court heard that Hussain gave her drugs to deal at school.

Girl J said he gave her CS spray and encouraged her to use it against another girl, and that he gave her a truncheon.

Beating

Uttley suggested that Girl J had a “fiery temper”. She replied, “Yes, especially when Ash started beating me.”

She told the court, “When Ash was being violent towards me, that was my way of releasing that. My behaviour went completely out of control.”

Uttley asked why Hussain’s alleged assaults on Girl J were not recorded in her medical records. She said, “I never really told anyone.”

In a police interview in 2013 she said she hid injuries.

The court heard that Girl J had contacted Jahangir Akhtar in 2006 or 2007 to try and get in touch with Hussain regarding their child.

Uttley suggested this was the first time she had contact with Akhtar. Girl J said, “I met him at the petrol station [see left]. That is how I knew who he was.”

Uttley asked why Girl J had contact with Hussain in 2011. She said she wanted support with their child and hadn’t recognised Hussain’s behaviour as abuse.

She said Hussain “started with threats” and “said he was going to have someone shoot me”.

The court also heard that Hussain sent Girl J abusive text messages in 2013. “He was saying he hopes people find me and rape me,” she told the court.

Girl J said police said she had “encouraged it” because she had responded.

A police report recorded the incident as “non-crime/domestic”.


Police who witnessed abuse in Rotherham may refuse to give evidence, court hears

Police officers who knew about child sexual abuse may lie about it for fear of getting “in the shit”, a court  heard this week.

Five men and two women are on trial at Sheffield Crown Court. They deny over 60 charges relating to child sexual exploitation offences alleged to have taken place between 1987 and 2003.

One complainant, Girl J, secretly recorded a conversation she had with two officers, detective constable Diane Garner and detective constable Lee Robinson on 26 March 2013.

She discussed her alleged abuse by defendant Arshid Hussain, known as Ash, with the officers. A transcript of the meeting was read to the court.

Girl J had said police should have records of an occasion when police found her aged 14 having sex with Hussain.

She asked if police officers involved at the time would have to make statements if she provided their names. She said the names would include officers who used to ring Hussain “and tell him that police were looking for me”.

Statement

Robinson said, “I can’t guarantee that. If they walked in there and they saw you were having sex and they know you’re only 14 and they’ve seen this Asian male, if they put that in a statement, they know they’re going to get in the shit because why didn’t they do something about that?”

“It may be that if we went to speak to that person, they might turn around and say, ‘I didn’t see anything like that’.”

He said officers at the time would have viewed Girl J as “a lovesick teenager who keeps going back to this fella”. He said, “Opinions have changed. Now we identify that as child abuse.”

Girl J told the court she made the recording because she “didn’t trust” Garner and “knew she was a bad officer”.

She said officers dismissed her suggestion that she could provide DNA evidence showing that Hussain was the father of a child conceived when she was 15.

Girl J also told the court she felt she was “blackmailed” by Rotherham council after speaking to the media. She felt social workers implied she had “put my kids at risk” and were “saying they were going to take my kids away from me for coming forward.”

The trial continues.


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News
Fri 15 Jan 2016, 09:59 GMT
Issue No. 2486
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