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Operation Augusta — [Sir Christopher Chope in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 10:37 am on 5th February 2020.

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Photo of James Daly James Daly Conservative, Bury North 10:37 am, 5th February 2020

My thoughts are with the victims of these crimes. I hope they have had the help and assistance they require to come to terms with what has happened to them, and that they go on to live positive and fruitful lives. I am sure they will.

In the short time I have, I want to make one point. The report is horrific. For 14 years, men in an area of Greater Manchester were allowed to commit the most horrific offences, and it was known to the authorities. That speaks for itself. In the report, individuals are identified who must be held to account. As a Member of Parliament representing a seat in Greater Manchester where police are investigating similar offences, I ask the Minister what the Government can do to hold to account those officers who have taken decisions and behaved in a way that has put young lives at risk and ruined them? Despite those circumstances, nothing seems to have happened.

The underlying tone of the report is that, for too long, nobody cared and nobody had any interest in these girls. I hope that is going to change. One of the ways we can make that change is by ensuring that those who are responsible for the decisions—or the lack of decisions—to protect their interests are held to account. Putting it bluntly, we cannot allow them to get away with it.