Fury in the investigation of Britain’s biggest sexual abuse scandal, no officer faces justice

Dozens of police officers fell victim to the Rotherham sex scandal, which involved 1,400 children, a watchdog found – but one survivor called it “sick” and a “complete waste of money”. The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) has released its long-awaited report, which took eight years to publish and cost £6m.

It found that South Yorkshire police had “failed to protect vulnerable children and youth”, but had investigated the actions of 47 police officers, despite conducting 91 investigations, considering 20,000 documents, 800 investigative statements and 1,300 demonstrations. None of the officers involved were prosecuted or dismissed. Officers who had committed gross misconduct either retired or resigned, while others were criticized, ‘advised’.

They covered 265 separate allegations made by 51 complainants, 44 of whom were survivors of abuse and exploitation. The report found that eight officers had a case of responding to misconduct and six had a case of responding to gross misconduct.

They also identified 14 executives who demonstrated unsatisfactory performance, or who received management words of advice. The IOPC explained how two written warnings were given, seven no further action and three management actions or ‘words of advice’.

He upheld 43 complaints and did not uphold 121. A case involving gross misconduct of an officer was referred to the CPS under the Data Protection Act 1998, who decided not to take any action. Rotherham abuse survivor and campaigner Sammy Woodhouse, 37, who was framed and raped since she was 14, said she was “disgusting”, not holding anyone in police accountable despite a 10-year fight for justice went.

And he is upset that the officers were allowed to retire on full pension. “I’m glad my complaints were upheld because even today people think I’m lying. People always say I’m not the real victim because he didn’t sell me or move me around. It’s pathetic, ” He said Mirror,

“But according to this, not a single person has been held responsible for anything, despite all these proofs they have and they have retired and got full pension. It’s a battle of 10 years and I have put my heart and soul into everything.

“I have gone to the police, the IOPC, report after report, for training programs in detail. I am trying to take people to account but have not been successful. If you look at all the other places like Rochdale no. Are – one is held responsible for this. They are able to get away with it. I hate it.”

One of the survivors, Elizabeth, 34, not her real name, was abused since the age of 15, told Mirror : “It’s a complete joke and laughable. It’s sickening. There’s no accountability. It’s like the police are untouchable. It’s like the police can do whatever they want without fear of being held responsible for it.” Huh.

“This is a dangerous message to send not only to police officers but also to criminals. It is disrespectful to survivors and their families. What does this say for future victims? It will deter anyone from coming forward because What’s the matter really? In the end today it’s just a tick boxing exercise. They’re sorry they got caught. Now it’ll go back to denial again.”

The South Yorkshire Police Commissioner of Police and Crime also condemned the report, saying it “failed to identify any individual accountability” and “disappoints the victims and survivors”. PCC Alan Billings said: “I am disappointed that after eight years of very costly investigations, this report has failed to make any significant recommendations other than what had already been accepted and implemented by the South Yorkshire Police from the previous investigation a few years ago. .

“It reiterates what previous reports and reviews have shown – that was an unacceptable practice between 1997 and 2013 – but fails to identify any individual accountability. As a result, it frustrates victims and survivors.”

South Yorkshire Police (SYP) admitted that “we got it wrong and we disappointed the victims”. The IOPC investigation described how the juveniles were viewed by authorities as “consensual” to their abuse and put the car offense ahead of child sexual abuse and exploitation. It detailed that a parent concerned about a missing daughter said she was told by an officer “it was a ‘fashion accessory’ for girls in Rotherham to have an ‘older Asian boyfriend’ And she will come out of it”.

Another officer told a father that his child, who was so brutally raped that he needed surgery, may have been taught a “lesson”. In another case the authorities failed to prosecute a criminal who was found hiding under the bed with his victim, while the girl was held for police custody. Another officer, who had purchased steroids from a criminal and was charged with felony misconduct, resigned from the force ahead of the trial.

The true scale of the horrors in Rotherham came to light in August 2014, when an independent report concluded that an estimated 1,400 children were sexually abused by predominantly British-Pakistani men in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013. This showed how children were drugged and raped, sent to strangers for abuse and torture. According to the report, several children, including a 12-year-old girl, had become pregnant.

In the same year the IPCC, the independent Police Complaints Commission, now the IOPC, began an investigation into the police and their responses to allegations of child sexual abuse and exploitation. The report said: “While acknowledging the significant changes made since then to improve the way this type of crime is tackled, the report found significant failures by the SYP.”

Regarding the officers who had the matter to respond, the report said: “In many cases, the officers had retired and could not face disciplinary proceedings because of the law at that time. However, five of these officers Got approval from management action till final written warning.

“The sixth faced a misconduct hearing conducted by the force earlier this year and the case was not found to be proven by an independent panel. Of the 164 allegations we investigated, where the conduct of an officer was not investigated, we have dismissed 43 complaints.” Justified.

The report said: “Out of the six cases identified as gross misconduct, two went to hearings conducted by the appropriate authority, three officers retired and therefore we found that they would have had a case to answer for the gross misconduct, if they We could not identify one officer, but, if we had been able, he would have been served a notice of inquiry at the level of gross misconduct.”

It revealed that it had contact with 75 survivors and said that in some cases the survivors had “considered suicide, or made a tragic attempt”. It found that an ‘unwritten policy’ existed for not recording offenses unless there was a strong likelihood that an offense would be marked as ‘detected’ and on child sexual abuse or exploitation. Priority was given to funding and performance goals.

One of the complaints investigated was the victim, aged 15, who was raped in Rotherham Park in 2009. It added: “The survivor had serious internal injuries, hospital and social care staff suspected they might correspond to rape, and she required surgery. The survivor’s father told us that the officer handling the incident was insensitive and he made no effort to reassure the survivor, even suggesting to his father that it would teach a ‘lesson’ to the survivor.’

In another case the report revealed: “A woman called SYP about an inappropriate relationship between her 12-year-old stepdaughter and an older man but was told that if the survivor did not give a statement, the police would do nothing.” The woman felt that there was no point in reporting any concerns about the relationship and the future. Sadly, this survivor was sexually abused for three to four years.

The report said: “Many vulnerable individuals were seen not as victims but as problems. Especially the care of children. We have found several instances where crimes were not registered when they should have been, including one Includes reports of sexual assault and sexual activity with a child.

“In one case, we were told that at the 2001 Child Protection Convention, a detective constable who investigated crimes against a 12-year-old survivor remarked that the survivor had provided consent in various sexual encounters, Whereas the law was very clear that it is not possible for a child of this age to give consent.”

Steve Noonan, IOPC’s Principal Investigative Director, said: “I would like to first and foremost thank the survivors who have shown incredible bravery in speaking out about their experiences and throughout Operation Linden. Our report explains how SYP failed to protect vulnerable children and youth.

“Like other agencies in Rotherham at the time, it was not equipped to deal with the abuse and organized grooming of young girls on the scale we faced. We are encouraged by the progress made in addressing the recommendations made last year so that it Make sure the police learn from it. The challenge now is to ensure that, as these types of crimes continue to evolve, police forces continue to adapt so that they are never ready again.”

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