Eight men were due in court this morning following a police probe into the alleged grooming of young girls.

All of the suspects, from Rochdale, were charged late last night with conspiracy to commit penetrative sexual activity with a female under 16 years.

The men are Abdul Rauf, 42, of Darley Road; Liaqat Shah, 40, of Kensington Road; Adil Khan, 41, of Oswald Street; Qamar Shahzad, 29, of Conisborough; Mohammed Sajid, 34, of Jepheys Street; Mohammed Ikhlaq, 31, of Clover Hall Crescent; Mohammed Amin, 44, of Failinge Road and Abdul Aziz, 40, of Armstrong Hurst Close.

They will appear at Bolton Crown Court on 22nd June.

The charges against them include rape, paying for sexual services of a child, trafficking a child and controlling child prostitution.

Those charged are among 26 arrested in relation to the brutal sexual exploitation of young girls in the town. In addition to the eight remanded in custody, three men aged between 34 and 43 were re-bailed to later dates, a further five men are due to answer bail on 21 June and five other men have been released without charge, while three more are not on bail. Police said one man had been handed over to the UK Border Agency, while a further man failed to answer bail and is now wanted by police.

Source: Rochdale Observer