29 men charged in connection with child sexual exploitation offences against female victim in West Yorkshire

The men have been charged with a variety of sexual offences following an investigation into non-recent child sexual exploitation

West Yorkshire Police have today (12 May) charged 29 men in connection with the child sexual exploitation of one victim in Calderdale, West Yorkshire.

The men have been charged with a variety of sexual offences following an investigation into non-recent child sexual exploitation.

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The female victim was aged between 13 and 20 years old at the time of the alleged offences, the force said.

(Photo: PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

The men were accused of committing offences, including rape, attempted rape, indecent assault, and conspiracy to rape, in Calderdale and Bradford between 2003 and 2010.

“The vast majority of offending occurred in Calderdale, but some offences occurred in the Bradford District,” a spokesperson said. “The men have been charged with a variety of sexual offences following an investigation into non-recent child sexual exploitation.”

The men will appear at Bradford Magistrates Court on 7 July and 9 July.

Eight suspects who were arrested over the course of the investigation have been released without charge.

‘You will be listened to’

In February 2019, police investigating child sexual exploitation in the Halifax area arrested 33 men.

West Yorkshire Police said the men, aged between 30 and 40, were at the time detained following complaints made by one woman about sexual abuse allegedly committed against her as a child between 2002 and 2005.

In late 2018, the force had begun an extensive policing operation in relation to child sexual exploitation alleged by seven complainants in the Dewsbury and Batley areas of the county.

Detective Inspector Laura Nield, of Calderdale District Safeguarding, said at the time: “Protecting and safeguarding children is a top priority for the force and this operation forms part of West Yorkshire Police’s ongoing commitment to investigating both current and non-recent sexual offences against children.

“These crimes affect the most vulnerable in our society and are truly heinous crimes.

“We have specialist safeguarding units in each of our five policing districts, which include officers dedicated to investigating and dealing with both current and non-recent child sexual exploitation.

“Tackling child abuse is not something the police can do alone, and we continue to work closely with local authorities, charities and other organisations to support victims and bring offenders to justice.

“All our investigations are victim-led and the long-term well-being of those victims is of paramount importance. We would urge anyone who has been a victim of sexual abuse, no matter when it took place, to report it to the police.

“You will be listened to, taken seriously and supported by professionals with experience of dealing with these kinds of offences.”

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A version of this article originally appeared on our sister title, the Yorkshire Post

Additional reporting by Press Association