• 02

    February 2019

    33 men arrested in West Yorkshire child sexual exploitation probe

    Police investigating alleged child sexual exploitation in the Halifax area have arrested 33 men.

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

    The announcement comes just weeks after West Yorkshire Police said officers had arrested 55 men in relation to child sexual exploitation alleged by seven complainants in the Dewsbury and Batley areas.

    A spokeswoman said the 33 arrests in Calderdale, announced on Monday, were part of an ongoing operation.

    She said they were made as a number of addresses in Calderdale, Bradford and Kirklees were searched following an extensive policing operation which started in October.

    All of those arrested have been released under investigation pending further inquiries.

    Detective Inspector Laura Nield, of Calderdale District Safeguarding, said: "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 kind of offences."

    Last month, officers said 55 men were arrested at addresses in Dewsbury, Batley and Bradford over a number of months.

    All 55 were interviewed and released under investigation.

    That investigation centres on complaints made by seven women about alleged offences between 2002 and 2009.

    • Posted By: By Dave Higgens and Kirsty Bosley
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