|Rob Potts, assistant chief constable of Greater Manchester police,|
said child sexual abuse was an ‘absolute priority’
Photograph: Christopher Thomond for the Guardian
Six men have been charged as part of an ongoing investigation into child sexual exploitation in Rochdale.
The charges relate to alleged offences committed between 2004 and 2008 against three people who were aged between 14 and 16 at the time.
Joshim Miah, 31, of Yorkshire Street, Rochdale, is accused of rape and trafficking a person within the UK for sexual exploitation.
Mohammed Sadeer, 27, of Brimrod Lane, Rochdale, Naheem Akram, 39, of Manley Road, Rochdale, and a man, who police say cannot be named for legal reasons, are all also charged with rape.
Ittefaq Yousaf, 25, of Stanley Street, Rochdale, has been charged with sexual assault and causing/inciting a girl to engage in sexual activity, while Arfan Iqbal, 25, of Park Road, Rochdale, is charged with attempted rape.
All defendants are due to appear at Bury magistrates court on Thursday.
Rob Potts, assistant chief constable at Greater Manchester police, said: “This case is another that has been launched by Operation Doublet, an investigation into child sexual exploitation (CSE) that arose following the 2011 investigation into CSE in Rochdale.
“To date, 83 people have been arrested, 15 have been interviewed under caution and prosecutions have been launched against 25 people.
“These types of investigations remain incredibly complex and challenging but at the heart of our considerations is the welfare of the victims and we have a team of experienced and dedicated officers supporting them through the process.
“The sexual exploitation of children and young people is the absolute priority for Greater Manchester police and its partners. Since 2010 we have moved considerable resources into child protection and the investigation of sexual exploitation and the continuance of Operation Doublet is a symbol of our steadfast resolve to investigate these offences, no matter the timeframe, and to ensure that, where there is a case to answer, it is brought before the courts.”