Rochdale sexual abuse victims to sue police after officers escape disciplinary action

Greater Manchester Police has apologised for failings 'across agencies'

Jon Stone
Friday 13 March 2015 09:29
Rochdale, where nine men were jailed for abusing vulnerable teenage girls
Rochdale, where nine men were jailed for abusing vulnerable teenage girls

Two victims of child sexual abuse in Rochdale are to sue Greater Manchester Police (GMP) after it admitted it failed to properly investigate the series of crimes in the town.

A lawyer representing the victims told Sky News this morning that proceedings had been initiated against the service.

GMP announced this morning that no police officers would be charged or disciplined over failures in investigating child sexual abuse in Rochdale,

The police service has apologised after admitting failings “at individual and force level” when it dealt with abuse victims in the town between 2008 and 2010.

Out of 13 officers initially flagged by the force, misconduct notices were issued to only seven.

Of those, only one officer was found to merit disciplinary action. He was allowed to retire without sanction, while the other six were given “words of advice” by senior officers.

The force carried out its own review into its actions with supervision from the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

The report found that GMP put too much emphasis on the credibility of the victims of the abuse and did not focus on the seriousness of the crimes being alleged.

It said officers had also been distracted by performance targets on burglary and other crimes.

The Crown Prosecution Service was also said to have failed to bring abuse to trial because it considered an abuse victim an unreliable witness.

A full scale police operation was only set up into the claims after corroborating allegations by another girl came to light.

“It is widely accepted that the investigation … has exposed failings across all agencies in the response to the challenges associated with Child Sexual Exploitation,” the report summary said.

“What occurred in Rochdale has taken place and is sadly continuing to take place elsewhere in the country as all agencies who are involved in safeguarding are working to improve their understanding and approach to child sexual exploitation.”

The review is an internal document but is being published due to public interest in the case, senior officers said.

A summary of the report warned that the document itself could be “difficult to follow” for the public because it was an internal document and because significant information relating to personal cases had been redacted in the public copy.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in