Offences against Children

Home Office written question – answered on 21st December 2017.

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Photo of Lord Blencathra Lord Blencathra Chair, Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee, Chair, Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee

To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their assessment of the finding of the report by Quilliam, Group Based Child Sexual Exploitation – Dissecting Grooming Gangs, published in December, that 84 per cent of child sexual exploitation offenders who operate in gangs or groups are Asian, most of whom are men “of Pakistani (Muslim) origin, and the majority of their victims are young, white girls”; whether they plan to provide education and outreach to (1) the British Pakistani Muslim community to tackle such behaviour, and (2) to potential victims of grooming in areas with a large Pakistani Muslim community on the risks of being targeted by such gangs; and what guidance they have given to police forces in areas where such gangs are known to operate to give priority to tackling such grooming.

Photo of Baroness Williams of Trafford Baroness Williams of Trafford The Minister of State, Home Department

People who abuse children must be stopped – their race, age or gender is irrelevant. Child sexual exploitation is not exclusive to any single culture, community, race or religion. It happens in all areas of the country and can take many different forms. However, political or cultural sensitivities must not get in the way of preventing and uncovering child abuse. Our new £7.5 million centre of expertise on child abuse is conducting research into offender motivations, so that we can better understand and target different forms of offending.

We are strengthening law enforcement capacity and capability and have provided millions of pounds of extra investment to transform policing to respond to changing crimes such as child sexual abuse, including continued funding for the network of police CSE coordinators and analysts who identify organised child sexual abuse across police force boundaries so that offenders are subject to a robust response wherever they offend.

This has led to a huge increase in the volume of police activity – we have seen the volume of recording of child sexual abuse offences by the police increase by 164% since 2013. An increasing number of CSE cases have been prosecuted in the courts and heavy sentences handed down.

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