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Dawn raids across Manchester as police move in on gang who groomed under-age girls at drug-fuelled sex parties

Dozens of vulnerable teenage girls may have been rescued from the clutches of a paedophiles after a major police operation smashed a child sex gang.

Around 100 officers swooped on houses in a series of raids yesterday arresting 10 men suspected of grooming young girls for sex.

The victims were allegedly showered with gifts and then plied with drink and drugs before being taken to special 'sex parties' in Manchester and Salford.

A mattress is taken away from one of the homes raided as part of Operation Windermere

A mattress is taken away from one of the homes raided as part of Operation Windermere

The mattress is hauled into a police forensics van where it will be analysed by officers

The mattress is hauled into a police forensics van where it will be analysed by officers

At the parties the teenage girls – some as young as 14 - would be compelled to have sex with friends of the gang in what police say was a classic case of ‘sexual grooming and entrapment.’ Last night the men, all aged between 18-28, were being questioned by detectives at a number of different police stations across the North West.

They are the latest in a wave of arrests carried out by police investigating gangs of Asian men grooming underage white girls for sex.

Police Raids graphic

A string of disturbing cases in the Midlands and north of England prompted the launch of a nationwide investigation to look into the phenomenon.

In January Former Home Secretary Jack Straw was accused of ‘stereotyping after suggesting some men of Pakistani origin see white girls as ‘easy meat’.

Last night police were confident they had smashed yet another alleged gang after arresting the 10 men – seven Asian, two white and one black – on suspected child sex offences.

The arrests in Manchester, Salford and Buxton come after a major three-month inquiry into the sexual exploitation of a number of girls.

Detectives say at least 39 underage girls have been spoken to, either as suspected victims or witnesses, as part of the major probe.

It is understood a only six or seven alleged sex gang victims have been identified but detectives believe the true number runs into dozens.

Police say the alleged victims had been groomed by the older men who bought them meals or took them out for all-expenses-paid nights out.

The girls were understood to have been lured off the street with promises of cannabis, amphetamines, jewellery, new pairs of trainers and trips out to fast food restaurants.

After four of five weeks of 'affection and flattery', it is claimed, gang members would then ask for sex often after first giving the girls drink and drugs.

It is understood the girls – all aged around 14 and upwards - would also be taken to the 'sex parties' at flats and houses, where they would be ‘handed out’ to other men.

Detectives say they were allegedly targeted by the gang because they have either been in care or are from troubled family backgrounds.

Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney briefs the press after today's arrests

Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney briefs the press after today's arrests

Officers are briefed for the series of raids that were carried out this morning. The investigation involved around 100 detectives

Officers are briefed for the series of raids that were carried out this morning. The investigation involved around 100 detectives

The police investigation was launched after a number of girls in Stockport alerted social workers claiming they were being abused.

Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney of Greater Manchester Police said: ‘It is alleged the girls were groomed by individuals who then passed the girls on to friends. It was classic grooming - providing alcohol, drugs and free food, consequently leading to sexual entrapment.

‘I hope today's action shows people that the issue of sexual exploitation is one that we take extremely seriously.’ And he has appealed for help in combating sex gangs who prey on vulnerable young girls and commit ‘horrific’ abuse.

He said: ‘'These young people are very much often left out of society in some way and were craving care and love. It seems they were provided with food and love, McDonalds food and drugs.

Search: A suited forensics officer leaves the address in the Mosside area of Manchester where the raid took place

Search: A suited forensics officer leaves the address in the Mosside area of Manchester where the raid took place

The raids were part of a three-month investigation into the exploitation of teenage girls

The raids were part of a three-month investigation into the exploitation of teenage girls

‘I think the abuse can be stopped by the community working with us and telling us what is going on. If you see young males talking girls into flats and houses we would like the public to tell us about it.’ In January a gang of eight Asian men from Rochdale was arrested accused of targeting more than a dozen underage white girls with drink and drugs before turning them into sex slaves.

Last week they were charged of a variety of offences relating to sexual activity with girls under 16, rape, child prostitution and child trafficking.

Figures shows there have been 18 sex gang prosecutions since 1997 - 15 in the last three years - involving girls aged 11-16.

Last year a middle-class, privately-educated schoolgirl - also from Rochdale - was rescued after being forced to act as a sex slave to a gang of Asian men.

The troubled 14-year-old was targeted with vodka and cigarettes after being spotted by the gang wandering the streets.

She was made to have sex with a string of men before being pimped out as a white under age prostitute in Manchester city centre..

Nine men - all Asian - were later jailed after admitting a series of serious sexual offences against the teenage girl including facilitating child prostitution.



Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2003317/Manchester-Polices-early-morning-raids-target-sexual-exploitation-teenage-girls.html#ixzz1PNkv8XAy

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