In Rotherham, England, a group of Pakistani immigrants and others of Pakistani descent deliberately targeted white teenage girls for sexual exploitation, with a religious angle to the targeting.

The authorities knew of the exploitation, but were fearful of talking about it or going public with it for fear of being called racist or Islamophobic.

So the abuse continued for over a decade, with approximately 1400 girls gang raped and otherwise sexually abused. It’s all detailed in The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Rotherham, 1997 – 2013 (embedded at bottom of this post) released on August 21.  From the report:

Rotherham Child Exploitation Cover

No one knows the true scale of child sexual exploitation (CSE) in Rotherham over the years. Our conservative estimate is that approximately 1400 children were sexually exploited over the full Inquiry period, from 1997 to 2013….

It is hard to describe the appalling nature of the abuse that child victims suffered. They were raped by multiple perpetrators, trafficked to other towns and cities in the north of England, abducted, beaten, and intimidated. There were examples of children who had been doused in petrol and threatened with being set alight, threatened with guns, made to witness brutally violent rapes and threatened they would be next if they told anyone. Girls as young as 11 were raped by large numbers of male perpetrators….

By far the majority of perpetrators were described as ‘Asian’ by victims, yet throughout the entire period, councillors did not engage directly with the Pakistani-heritage community to discuss how best they could jointly address the issue. Some councillors seemed to think it was a one-off problem, which they hoped would go away. Several staff described their nervousness about identifying the ethnic origins of perpetrators for fear of being thought racist; others remembered clear direction from their managers not to do so…..

This has been in the British papers for days, with The Daily Mail leading the way:

Daily Mail Rotherham scandal

The scandal made The New York Times yesterday:

A report released on Tuesday on accusations of widespread sexual abuse in the northern England city of Rotherham found that about 1,400 minors — some as young as 11 years old — were beaten, raped and trafficked from 1997 to 2013 as the local authorities ignored a series of red flags.

Some children were doused in gasoline and threatened with being set on fire if they reported their abusers, the report said, and others were forced to watch rapes and threatened with the same fate. In more than a third of the cases, the victims appear to have been known to child protection agencies, but the police and local government officials failed to act….

The vast majority of perpetrators have been identified as South Asian and most victims were young white girls, adding to the complexity of the case. Some officials appeared to believe that social workers pointing to a pattern of sexual exploitation were exaggerating, while others reportedly worried about being accused of racism if they spoke out. The report accused officials of ignoring “a politically inconvenient truth” in turning a blind eye to men of Pakistani heritage grooming vulnerable white girls for sex.

It was not just the racial angle that caused authorities to remain silent — the cover up extended to the religious angle, as The Telegraph reports:

Dr Taj Hargey, imam of the Oxford Islamic Congregation, said race and religion were inextricably linked to the recent spate of grooming rings in which Muslim men have targeted under-age white girls….

Dr Hargey said that the case brought shame on the city and the community and is a set back for cross community harmony.
But worse still is the refusal to face up to its realities, he wrote in the Daily Mail.

Political correctness contributed to the perpetuation of these crimes.

And is contributing to whitewashed reporting of the scandal, BBC accused of censorship over Rotherham child abuse by failing to mention that gangs were Asian.

The facts are the facts.

There have been widespread child abuse problems in the Catholic Church and other religious groups.  We should not be afraid to name names, so long as factually accurate.

And absolutely never should cover-up such crimes out of fear of being falsely accused of an “-ism” or a “-phobia”.

Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Exploitation in Rotherham