Sunak vows end to political correctness protecting child abusers

PM’s plans to deal with grooming gangs exploiting children

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has exclusively told that a new crackdown on evil grooming gangs that target children will put an end to political correctness getting in the way of keeping young girls safe. In a video filmed for the Express, Mr Sunak announced the new initiative will be the “most robust response to this issue any government has” ever taken.

New rules will make it mandatory for perpetuators’ ethnicity data to be collected, “because political correctness should never get in the way of keeping young girls safe.”

The Prime Minister says he wants to address the “very grave matter” after several independent inquiries confirmed that “over the last few decades, 1000s of young girls in towns and cities across Britain were sexually abused and assaulted by grooming gangs.”

He adds, “many of the victims were some of the most vulnerable people in our society”, who were failed because they were ignored after coming forward.

Mr Sunak says “local politicians, social workers or even the police” all played parts in ignoring whistleblowers.

Today the government announced a new Grooming Gangs Taskforce, which will comprise specialist officers parachuted in to assist police forces with live child sexual exploitation and grooming investigations.

The Prime Minister tells Express readers the new specialist Taskforce “will disrupt grooming gangs wherever they may be, and bring perpetrators to justice to ensure victims are never ignored again”.

Data analysts will work alongside the Taskforce and use “cutting edge data and intelligence” to identify criminals who carry out child exploitation offences.

Mr Sunak adds the government is “strengthening a national hotline for whistleblowers”.

The Prime Minister concludes by promising “the most severe punishments” for the criminals carrying out the appalling crime of child sexual grooming, after admitting that up until now “far too many perpetrators have never been caught or punished”.

“We will be ensuring the perpetrators of these crimes receive the most severe punishments. We will do whatever it takes to root out this evil once and for all.”

The Prime Minister will formally launch the Grooming Gangs Taskforce this afternoon, with visits to Leeds and Manchester where he will meet survivors, local police and members of the new crack team.

New legislation will be introduced to make being the leader of, or involved in, a grooming gang a statutory aggravating factor during sentencing.

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The Chair of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, Professor Alexis Jay OBE, has warmly welcomed the government’s new announcements.

Mr Jay said the Prime Minister’s statement today “places a renewed focus on tackling the sexual abuse and exploitation of children by organised networks.”

“I welcome these announcements, some of which reflect the recommendations of the Inquiry’s own report on child sexual exploitation in 2022.

“The commitment to Mandatory Reporting is very encouraging, and I look forward to working with the Government to ensure that the full package of the Inquiry’s recommendations in its Final Report is taken forward to better protect children from sexual abuse in the future.”

Writing in the Mail on Sunday, Suella Braverman said the perpetrators of child grooming gangs are “groups of men, almost all British-Pakistani, who hold cultural attitudes completely incompatible with British values”.

Mrs Braverman promised the Government will “track down and punish the grooming gangs with the same sense of mission and determination that we rightly demonstrated in pursuing the murderers of Stephen Lawrence”.

In 2014 a report into the Rotherham grooming scandal by Alexis Jay estimated 1,400 children were sexually abused by gangs in the town between 1997 and 2013, predominantly by British-Pakistani men.

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