A report commissioned by the Mayor of Greater Manchester found that police systematically overlooked crimes committed by an “Asian” grooming gang for fear of appearing racist.
In the early 2000s, a grooming gang comprised of 97 men from South Asian backgrounds was able to roam free in Manchester, abusing at least 57 young girls, as members of the Greater Manchester Police (GMP) were told to focus on apprehending offenders of “other ethnicities”.
“What had a massive input was the offending target group were predominantly Asian males and we were told to try and get other ethnicities,” said an unnamed GMP detective constable, per The Telegraph.
Members of the “Asian” paedophile ring sexually abused young girls, using drugs to make their victims compliant, leading to the death of a 15-year-old girl, Victoria Agoglia, who was injected with heroin by a 50-year-old man, leading to an overdose which killed her in 2003.
At the time of her death, Agoglia was under the care of Manchester City Council, which the report claims was privy to “multiple threats, sexual assaults and serious sexual exploitation”.
The report admits the council did nothing to prevent her death and that her murderer remains unpunished to this day.
The inquiry into police negligence in investigating grooming gangs was sparked by a former GMP detective, Maggie Oliver, who said that the report “vindicated” the cause she had been fighting for 15 years.
“Girls were lost to the wind. What has been the cost of all these lives? We will never be able to put a number on how many lives have been lost,” said Oliver.
“I want the law changing so there can be retrospective accountability for people whose duty it is to protect the vulnerable. It’s knowing and deliberate neglection of duty… [those who were involved] should be charged with gross misconduct — it’s criminal — where is the accountability?” the former detective aasked.
Maggie Oliver said that her concerns over the grooming gangs were ignored by the upper echelons of the police force, who she claims said: “Stupid woman, she’s become too emotionally involved.”
“There will be other people in their own force areas who see similar things; I encourage them to stand up and speak up. This has been [my] life for 15 years, it’s destroyed my life but I don’t regret it because we’ve made the public aware that this is the truth. I think the establishment will do half the job if they can get away with it,” she concluded.
Assistant Chief Constable Mabs Hussain said in response to the report: “We accept that authorities fell short of doing all they could to protect and support the child victims of sexual exploitation.”
In 2017, the counter-extremism think tank Quilliam found that 84 per cent of those connected in grooming gang crimes in the United Kingdom were Muslim men with South Asian roots.
The report, which documented testimonies from grooming gang members during court proceedings, found that the men calculatedly targeted white girls for their sexual abuse as they were seen as “easy targets” compared to girls from their own communities, who they felt should be “protected”.