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tv   BBC News at Five  BBC News  August 9, 2017 5:00pm-6:01pm BST

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tonight at 5. 17 men and one woman who groomed vulnerable girls and young women for sex, have been convicted of crimes including rape and trafficking. newcastle crown court heard that girls as young as m were exploited by an organised, cynical organisation, and passed between abusers over a four year period. i woke up in the morning. the wardrobe was pushed up against the door. he'd had sex with us while i was asleep. how many sessions would you say you'd been to? about 60. the sexual exploitation of vulnerable people is, in my opinion, the challenge of our generation. it is a huge task that we are faced with. but the nspcc says it is ‘appalled' to learn that police paid a convicted child rapist ten thousand pounds to assist their investigation. we'll have the latest from newcastle... the other main stories on bbc news at 5. the us defends president trump's warning that he'll bring "fire and fury" to north korea if it threatens america.
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what the president was doing was sending a strong message to north korea in language that kim jong—un will understand, because he doesn't seem to understand diplomatic language. french police shoot and arrest a man suspected of being behind an attack on soldiers this morning near paris. the 83 year old man killed while walking his dogs in norfolk has been named as peter wrighton. his family says he was "a lovely, gentle husband, dad and grandfather". and stunning scenery draws visitors from around the world to the isle of skye — but it's now so popular with tourists its roads and services are struggling to cope. good evening and welcome to the bbc news at five.
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17 asian men, and one white woman, who groomed girls and young women for sex in newcastle have been convicted of crimes including rape, trafficking and conspiracy to incite prostitution. newcastle crown court heard that vulnerable girls, one as young as m, were exploited by an "organised, cynical organisation" and passed between abusers over a four year period. it's also emerged that as part of their investigation, the police paid a convicted child rapist about £10,000 to act as an informant. 0ur correspondent fiona trott reports. guilty of causing girls and women serious harm, caught as part of operation sanctuary, one of the biggest sexual exploitation investigations in the north of england. 0ne17—year—old says she was raped at a party session organised by local men.
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it's a familiar story. i woke up in the morning. the wardrobe was pushed up against the door. her police interview was played to the court. to protect her identity, we've asked actors to read what the jury saw. he had had sex while i was asleep. still now, i'm confused about it. how did you feel when you were told he had done that to you? dirty, confused. how many sessions had you been to? about 60. 22 complainants came forward in this case. from all walks of life. two had been in care. one had been a college student. they were all vulnerable in their own way, whether it was their age, one was just 1a, or they had difficulties at home. most of them were approached here in the west end of the city. an older man would pull up in an expensive car and offer them drink and drugs, or invite them to a party. this was one party house the police raided.
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behind these doors, teenage girls were given as many drugs as they wanted and were victimised by older men. for this man, it'sjudgment day. he's on his way to court. later, he is found guilty of drugs offences. 0peration sanctuary started in 2013. it's been a long and complex investigation. controversially, officers recruited a convicted child rapist as an informant. he was paid around £10,000. i get that this is difficult for people. many will look at that and say it is morally repugnant that the police would pay somebody in those circumstances, a convicted child sex offender, for information. this is the world we have to enter into. it's shadowy, it's murky, it's full of risks. what i can say is this. the prize that we are seeking
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and that we gained in this case is that the information gathered from that individual has put dangerous men behind bars. most of the perpetrators were from pakistani, indian and bangladeshi backgrounds. this city councillor says leaders from all faiths could re—educate some local men to stop similar exploitation in the future. people should not be telling the asian community how to live their lives. it's like saying to the white community that we should be talking about whatjimmy savile did. we should not do that. however, there is a huge opportunity to talk about these issues on a regular basis about the rights of women. it is important to use religion, particularly islam, to educate some of these people. seven years after the conspiracies began, those who thought it was acceptable to exploit vulnerable girls and women are now awaiting sentence. in the past hour police have been holding a news
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conference about the case. chief constable steve ashman suggested that some communities must do more to confront sexual crimes. let me be clear that there has been no political correctness here. these are criminals. and there has been no hesitation in arresting them and targeting them using all of the means at our disposal. it is for individual communities perhaps to ask themselves whether they are doing all they can to eradicate such attitudes. and behaviour. so that the stigma and shame attached to such people prevented from rearing its head again. the communities that we work with are appalled at this offending and we have encountered nothing other than the fullest support from all of them. 0ur reporter alison freeman is in newcastle. she was that the that lengthy news
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conference as some strong words and strong defence of this from the chief constable? yes we had the police and the council here telling us police and the council here telling us about what they are describing as the largest investigation, there has ever been carried out by the northumbria force. they said over the course of operation sanctuary they made 461 arrests and spoke to more than 700 potential victims from the start of 2013. today marks the end of four trials over two years. there has been 17 men convicted of various crimes as we heard described there. but one of the key things they were talking about today was they were talking about today was the use of a convicted paedophile to infiltrate the gangs, to find out about those parties and to provide information to police so they could convict those men. the nspcc said todayit convict those men. the nspcc said today it was appalling that northumbria police had used such an informant. they said it went against
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all other child protection procedures. but steve ashman the chief constable was firmly saying that he would do it again. steve bannon the chief superintendent leading the investigation said this was about money versus preventing children from being raped. he said it was a no—brainer and something that they needed to do. he said they had to do it even though morally it was something they had to think about. but today the police are standing firm that this was an achievement on their part of that they achieve convictions and that they achieve convictions and that they would use an informant in such a way again in the future. with me now is our home affairs correspondent mark easton. it is horrific, distressing to read the details of this but regrettably there are elements of this that are familiar to us. i think so. the scandal follows the pattern of
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dozens actually of similar grooming gang cases that have been exposed in recent yea rs. gang cases that have been exposed in recent years. the predominantly asian men and the victims predominantly young white women. the crimes very often occur, and in this case it was also true, in a world of bedsits and fast—food outlets, taxi ra nks bedsits and fast—food outlets, taxi ranks and the part of town where the poor immigrant communities not shoulders with the vulnerable white population. and i think it was the rochdale grooming scandal which came toa rochdale grooming scandal which came to a head in 2012 with the prosecution then that's all the suggestions that councils, police and the crown prosecution service had not done enough to intervene to stop and there were concerns that maybe they had not done that because ofa maybe they had not done that because of a concern about a racist backlash. we the chief constable saying there was no political correctness here. i think that is
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something that people are aware of, there has been much soul—searching as to what should be done and what more can be done to prevent this kind of thing going on. police forces now routinely briefed officers on how to spot this kind of abuse. the likely victims, the likely locations, different kinds of grooming behaviour, the way these gangs operate. and prosecutors are advised that victims have to be careful, they're advised that victims have to be careful, they‘ re often advised that victims have to be careful, they're often people who distrust the authorities and they may have been in trouble with the police themselves, they may be used to not telling the truth. not everything that they say is going to be correct. and also they may not even see themselves as having been abuse. there are so controlled by their abusers the that they do not see what is happening to them as abuse. we've seen in the last few yea rs new abuse. we've seen in the last few years new advice to prosecutors encouraged to look at these cases, not looking at the credibility of the victim but looking at the credibility of the allegation. and
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some will say that actually the case today and i'm sure the police would say this comic is an example of the system working as it should. that they have introduced these new measures and they had not been hampered by concerns about racial backlash and so on. no political correctness here is the chief co nsta ble correctness here is the chief constable said. they've gone in and that everything they can and they have achieved these prosecutions. and those convictions have been secured because lessons have been learned from those in previous cases? our lessons being read all the time here? i think they are and i think one thing to remember, there have been dozens of these trials now involving grooming gang. very similar kind of modus operandi in many of them. and what we're recognising is that this is a problem that exists within many of oui’ problem that exists within many of our towns and cities and that when you look, you find. and indeed one
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charity wrote a report saying exactly that, if you look you probably will find. and the sad truth is that as we look, as we take these allegations seriously, we are discovering these kind of things. and in this case involving hundreds of victims potentially. and that is something that one hopes we are beginning to understand, the risks that are out there and the ways of preventing it. thank you for now. let's speak now to stephen bell, the head of the charity changing lives, which has supported more than 30 victims in the 0peration sanctuary investigation — 16 of whom are specific to the convictions today. thank you for your time tonight. your broad thoughts 1st of august evening that it has been a long investigation, a long period of trial. your thoughts about some of
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those young people who have finally been helped to her over a small degree today with these convictions. i think degree today with these convictions. ithinki degree today with these convictions. i think i have been involved with the charity for more than 20 years. i think this is the worst abuse i have ever seen amongst vulnerable people particularly amongst the scale of it. my heart goes out to the victims and to their families. they have been systematically abused over a long period of time. and i think this has been a coordinated effort by the police and local authority and voluntary sector to try to actually work out what is happening within our communities. i think it happens in all communities and what we can actually do to work with the victims and that is what my charity does. and when you start to help these young women and girls who have been through years in some
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cases of horrific abuse, i sit here asa cases of horrific abuse, i sit here as a woman wondering, i did not really know how someone can put their life back together after that. i know that is why your charity exists. but how many years of work lie ahead for you and them to try to have some form of normal life and self—respect after all that? have some form of normal life and self-respect after all that? for some people will be a lifetime. what ifind some people will be a lifetime. what i find interesting is some people will be a lifetime. what ifind interesting is today some people will be a lifetime. what i find interesting is today for many of the people we are working with it is just the start the journey. they have got to put the horrific things that happen to them behind them and then start the process to move forward with the trauma they have had. 0ur role is to work with people who have been sexually abused and we have been doing this now for the past decade. what we do is build the trust of these people. and some of the victims have a mistrust with authority. so we help victims try to come to terms with what has happened
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to them and also insist that they are victims and it was not their fault. we offer a number of wide—ranging schemes enabling people to start to rebuild their life and put it back together. and also a final thought about some people you work with who perhaps do not realise 01’ work with who perhaps do not realise or have taken a long time to realise that they were a victim. precisely the point of our last speaker. they do not realise what has happened to them almost. it is horrific, you cannot put words into this. these people have been systematically abused over a number of years. i know the police have come in for criticism today but hats off that we have got a number of people who have been convicted for these terrible crimes. there is going to be a further number who will be convicted and they can only do that through partnership work with the three sectors involved resulting in those people being ta ken
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sectors involved resulting in those people being taken away from our streets. the victims i think in this have been through a massive ordeal, now it is time for them to start to try to rebuild their lives. many thanks. and you can see a special inside out documentary about 0peration sanctuary here on the bbc news channel at 8.30 tonight. this is bbc news at five — the headlines. 17 men and one woman are convicted of grooming vulnerable girls for sex in newcastle. the us defends donald trump's warning that threats from north korea would be met with ‘fire and fury‘ — saying the president was using language kimjong—un would understand. french police shoot and arrest a man suspected of carrying out an attack on a group of soldiers in a suburb of paris this morning. and after his temporary ban of the
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world athletics championship issac ma kwa la world athletics championship issac makwala is clear to run in the time trial to try to qualify for the semifinal of the 200 metres tonight. and later mo farah takes up the 5000 metres heats, so far the only british athlete to win a medal for the hosts. and england kicked off their rugby world cup defence in style beating spain 56—5 in the opening match in ireland for the wales lost their opening match against four—time champions new zealand, 411—12. more on those stories just after half past. the united states and north korea are being urged to show restraint, after a growing war of words between the two nations. last night president trump said threats from pyongyang would be met with fire, fury and power. the communist state says it's considering a missile strike on the us territory of guam — the us secretary of state rex tillerson arrived
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there at lunchtime. guam is a small island in the pacific ocean, where us strategic bombers are based. earlier today president trump reaffirmed american's military power, boasting about the country's nuclear arsenal. the president tweeted again, saying ‘hopefully we will never have to use this power, but there will never be a time that we are not the most powerful nation in the world.‘ we‘ll have the latest from korea in a moment, but first this report on the increasing tension, from tom burridge. us military exercises on guam. this was earlier in the summer. with several thousand american troops based here and us bombers, north korea has chosen to pinpoint this tiny american island as a potential target. north korean state tv said its armed forces are considering hitting guam and the american airbase there with medium to long—range ballistic missiles.
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it came after an uptick in rhetoric from president trump last night. it will be met with fire, fury and frankly power, the likes of which this world has never seen before. thank you. north korea threatens... few us presidents have used such incendiary language against another nation. it echoes president truman‘s warning to japan when he announced an atomic bomb had fallen on hiroshima during world war ii. if they do not accept our terms they may expect a reign of fire from the air the like of which has never been seen on this earth. the us secretary of state said the president‘s language was deliberately tough. he is sending a strong message to north korea in language that kim jong—un will understand
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because he does not seem to understand diplomatic language. the president wanted to be clear to the north korean regime that the us has an unquestionable ability to defend itself and its allies and it is important that he delivers that message before any escalation on their part. guam sits right out in the pacific ocean. it is closer to asia and both south and north korea than it is to the us mainland. on tv in guam the threat is portrayed as real, but the people there are calm. i am not nervous, i am confident in our military capability. the first thing that comes to mind immediately is my family, to come up with a plan if anything happens. the stakes do not come higher than nuclear war. even now after north korea‘s nuclear missiles test, few see that as an imminent risk, but the cost of potential warfare for the korean peninsula and the region would be high.
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we can speak to our washington correspondent jane 0‘brien. this can change hourly, what is the latest you‘re hearing about the approach of the administration to this? donald trump has come under criticism from both members of his own party and democrats for ratcheting up the rhetoric and really adding to the risk that they could be a miscalculation on either side. but rex tillerson today in guam has been trying to clarify both state m e nts guam has been trying to clarify both statements and also make it clear as far as he‘s concerned the way forward here is diplomacy and not military action. he says that is in fa ct military action. he says that is in fact working thanks to pressure in pa rt fact working thanks to pressure in part from china and also the tougher sanctions imposed by the united nations at the weekend. and the aim
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of all this diplomacy is to bring pyongyang to the talking table, he says that is the ultimate goal. so a bit of a mixed message from the administration. and separately, news just in the last hour or so of an fbi raid on a property owned by a key ally of donald trump? that is right, this is just key ally of donald trump? that is right, this isjust been revealed that onjuly right, this isjust been revealed that on july the 26th the right, this isjust been revealed that onjuly the 26th the home of paul manafort, the campaign manager for donald trump during the election last year, was raided by the fbi who took away a number of documents. it happened the day after paul manafort appeared before a senate intelligence committee conducting an investigation into alleged russian meddling in the presidential election. so a clear sign that this investigation is not going away. and in spite of donald trump and his protestations that the fbi and special counsel clearly feel there is something to investigate. thank
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you very much. police in france have arrested a man suspected of deliberately driving a car into a group of soldiers near their barracks, in a suburb of paris. six soldiers were injured in the incident in levallois—perret, north—west of the capital. the man was arrested on a french motorway and is believed to have been unarmed. daniela relph reports. the smashed windows of the car. the security forces had stopped the bmw on a motorway close to calais. they had been following the vehicle since it was driven north out of paris. wearing balaclavas, their identities hidden, officers from the counterterrorism team surround the vehicle. as they had stopped the car the driver was shot and injured. he has now been arrested. the french prime minister has confirmed they believe
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the man detained was behind the earlier attack. and here the immediate aftermath of the earlier incident. the emergency services at the scene helping the injured. all of them soldiers, targeted as they left their barracks. it happened just after eight o‘clock this morning in a suburb in the north—west of paris. this attack proves that the terrorist threat is still present. which requires more and more vigilant and this counterterrorism operation which is essential. the soldiers were part of the heightened counterterrorism operation, following the high number of attacks in france in recent years. in 2015 militants targeted officers at the satirical magazine charlie hebdo, killing 12 people. later that year 130 were killed in attacks on paris around the bataclan theatre.
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and on bastille day in july last year a truck was driven through a crowd on the nice promenade. 86 people died. there have also been low—level incidents, many aimed at the security forces. today‘s event yet another attack on those trying to protect france. the local mayor has described it as incomprehensible and odious. five men charged over the hillsborough disaster and its aftermath have appeared at warrington magistrates court. among the is the former chief constable of west yorkshire police, sir norman bettison, seen here arriving at court on the left. they‘ve all been bailed to appear at preston crown court next month. the family of an 83 old man stabbed
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to death while walking his dog described him as a lovely husband, father and grandfather. he was stabbed in woodland in east norfolk. police are still looking for his attacker. a man has been convicted ofa attacker. a man has been convicted of a murder carried out four years ago after it was discovered that the victim‘s computer had recorded the attack. the death of peter fasoli had previously been ruled as accidental but this afternoon jason marshall was found guilty of killing him. richard lister has been following this case at the old bailey. a criminal case, explain what has happened? a bizarre and gruesome case. which almost never came to court. the story goes back to january 2013 when peter fasoli but my body was found at his house where there had been a fire. investigators initially ruled there was no evidence of foul play and his
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death was accidental and probably caused by faulty electrical in his house. and there the story ended until almost years later when the nephew of peter fasoli went through some of the effects that have been found in the house after his death and amongst them was a computer. he took the drive from the computer and examined it and honoured made a horrific discovery. he found eight hours of video which was taken from inside the house of peter fasoli with a camera attached to the computer and it covered his final hours. and what is saw there are basically was the murder of his uncle played out in real time. he saw the arrival of jason marshall at his uncle‘s house and apparently they had arranged to have sex of the house but some hours later he tied up house but some hours later he tied up peter fasoli, he gagged and bound him with handcuffs and broke and he suffocated him. after that point he tried to clean up what he had done in the house, stealing the car and
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bank cards of peter fasoli and he left the house. and as he left the fire was already starting house. there it would have been left but for the fact that the nephew found this video and to go to the police. the police track down mr marshall to italy where it was discovered he was actually serving a sentence for the murder and attempted murder of two other men in italy, both of those attacks carried out within weeks of his arrival in italyjust after fleeing this country for the murder of peter fasoli. he was brought back to this country, jason marshall, in february. the trial took place, it began at the end ofjuly and the jury began at the end ofjuly and the jury tookjust over began at the end ofjuly and the jury took just over an began at the end ofjuly and the jury tookjust over an hour to reach their verdict of guilty having sat through several hours of the video that had been recovered. now the judge said today that of course he will receive a life sentence and he expected the minimum term would probably be around 30 years. thank
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you. some of the other stories making bbc news at five. a 15—year—old boy stabbed to death in london has been named as jermaine goupall. he was attacked in thornton heath, south london, last night, and is the second teenager to be killed in a knife attack in london in less than 2a hours. a murder investigation has been launched. it‘s the 15th teenage knife crime fatality in london this year. the police officer leading the hunt for a jogger who knocked a female pedestrian into the path of a bus says there has been a huge response to their appeal for help. cctv footage showed the man barging into the woman and knocking her over on putney bridge in south west london. the police say they are now following a number of "viable leads" in the investigation. the belgian government has accused dutch officials of failing to pass on information about a scare involving eggs contaminated with pesticide. they also believe the authorities in the netherlands became aware of the problem much earlier than thought. it‘s led to poultry farms
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being closed and millions of eggs being removed from the shelves. we will have much more on those stories coming up, but now we will get the weather. that image says it all, a lot of rain around. the radar picture shows the heavy rain affecting east anglia and the south—east. there have been some reports of transport problems and localised flooding. it will be wet through eastern areas this afternoon, the rain only slowly clearing overnight. but the most places, i dry night, maybe the odd
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missed patch. temperatures of four, five or 60 greece in the countryside across northern and western areas. but after a cool start tomorrow, it is going to be a lovely day. compared with two day across the south—east. all part of the country seem sunny spells. more cloud into the afternoon. temperatures around 16 to 22 degrees. pleasantly enough in the sunshine. the changes on friday with rain from the west, strong winds but the weekend at this stage, doesn‘t look too bad. this is bbc news. the headlines: 18 people have been convicted of abusing vulnerable girls and young women in newcastle. police paid a convicted child rapist £10,000 to act as an informant during the investigation.
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the us secretary of state, rex tillerson, says president trump threatened north korea with "fire and fury" because he wanted to send a strong message the regime would understand. french police have shot and arrested a man suspected of being behind an attack on a group of soldiers on patrol in paris. six soldiers were injured in the attack. police name the 83—year—old man killed walking his dog in norfolk as peter wrighton. his family says he was "a lovely, gentle husband, dad and grandfather". we will talk more about the convictions in newcastle today, but we will catch up with the latest sport because plenty happening at the world athletics championships and beyond. good afternoon. at the world athletics championships botswanan sprinter isaac makwala is now cleared to run in a time
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trialfor the men‘s 200 metres semi—finals tonight. he had had previously been prevented from competing or even accessing the stadium because officials believed he was ill. let‘s go straight to 0lly foster who is at the london stadium for us. 0lly what more are you hearing? it is another twist, isn‘t it? issac ma kwa la it is another twist, isn‘t it? issac makwala tried to get in last night toa makwala tried to get in last night to a packed stadium for the 400 metres final which he had qualified for. 0fficials metres final which he had qualified for. officials had already kicked him out of the 200 metres heats on monday because he was one of those who had been diagnosed with the norah virus which has swept through one of the official team hotels. but is 48 hour quarantine, that expired at 2pm this afternoon. and the iaaf say under their own rules, they will allow him to try and qualify for the 200 metres semifinal tonight so after not being allowed into the stadium yesterday, he will have the stadium yesterday, he will have the
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stadium to himself at 6:40pm this evening he will be running in lane seven, that was the lane he was designated in the 200 metres first round. and the time he has to get is 20.53 seconds. and that is quicker than the portuguese sprinter, who qualified as the slowest lucky loser. if he can race 20.53 seconds, the botswana, he would make it into the botswana, he would make it into the semifinals just a couple of hours later. he was deeply unhappy at not being allowed to raise. he said he hadn‘t been examined properly, there was claim and counterclaim, but this will go some way to appeasing issac makwala and the botswana and team and the crowd. because issac makwala is the quickest man over 200 metres this year. he is certainly going to be a force to be reckoned with, but how well the last 48 hours take it out
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of him? it has been tipping down, very cool, sprinters don‘t like those kinds of conditions. but for the fans who have just come into the stadium, it will be a bonus for them. i have only experienced one thing like this before, it was the european championships in 2002 and the irish 200 metre sprint, had to ta ke the irish 200 metre sprint, had to take evasive action during his heat to get round a camera and he had to runa time to get round a camera and he had to run a time trial later that evening. so we have got that fascinating time trial to look forward to, we have mo farah in the 5,000m. he goes in the heats of that. shara proctor, the silver medallist to try and qualify in the long jump. but these conditions are difficult. we‘re waiting for decision to know whether the men‘s hammer qualification and the men‘s hammer qualification and the women‘s steeplechase qualification, they might be moved to another day because it would be deemed just too dangerous. but we
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are waiting for this extra event, issac makwala on the track by himself at 6:40pm and we will have that live. so many twists and turns. thank you very much, arlene foster. the women‘s rugby world cup started today in dublin with defending champions england storming to victory in their opening match beating spain 56—5. the world number ones started as they meant to go on, scoring their first try inside the first minute through bristol‘s meg jones. nine more tries would follow with winger kay wilson running in four of her own to give england a perfect start to the tournament. their next match in pool b is against italy on sunday. in pool a, it wasn‘t as smooth for wales, they faced four—time champions new zealand and conceded eight tries in the match eventually losing by 44—12. they face canada in their second match. the football association say they‘ll bid to host the 2021 women‘s euros. the bidding process for the tournament begins in september with a final decision
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due next year. england were knocked out of this year‘s tournament at the semifinal stage by hosts the netherlands, and fa chief executive martin glenn believes winning the bid would boost the game even more. we wa nt we want to keep growing the women‘s football game in england. it is growing really fast. the fa has put a lot of investment behind it in recent yea rs. a lot of investment behind it in recent years. the national team have done well, reached the semifinal of the euros after the semifinal of the world cup. grassroots participation is growing. we think there will be more women playing football in england next year than playing netball. we think posting the euros here in england 2021 at wembley stadium and the other stadium around the country, will give the game and another boost. that‘s all sport for now. you can keep up today with all those stories on the bbc sport website. more now on our top story, the news that 17 asian men, and one white woman, who groomed girls and young women
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for sex in newcastle have been convicted of crimes including rape, trafficking and conspiracy to incite prostitution. it also emerged during the trial that police paid a convicted child rapist £10,000 as an informant. addressing that particular issue, northumbia‘s police chief said that his force had wrestled with the decision, but ultimately, he suggested, the ends justified the means. this is about asking somebody who has associates in that world who knows, who perhaps might have some connection with that world to give specific information about whereabouts, times and about places. it is not about putting them into a position of risk. i am satisfied as
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ican position of risk. i am satisfied as i can possibly be that was the case. but i get entirely, morally, a lot of people hearing that headline that we paid a convicted child sex offenderfor information we paid a convicted child sex offender for information will find it difficult to accept. it is not an easy decision and it was something we wrestled with ourselves, but i can categorically state sat here today, there are dangerous men behind bars and vulnerable people protected that would not have been the case had been not use that informant. let‘s speak to peter saunders, the chief executive of the national association for people abused in childhood. peter, good evening. your response to that particular issue which the chief constable did confront head—on? chief constable did confront head-on? there were mixed emotions in the office this afternoon when this news came through. jubilation,
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if that is the right word, 18 particularly nasty criminals are now behind bars, knowing the police have done theirjob and done it well. our heart, as always, goes out to the many victims and survivors involved in this case. we hope they get the support they will potentially need for some time to come. there was this question of the payment to, again, a convicted child abuser. i think the chief constable spoke very well and very articulate about how uncomfortable he was and probably his colleagues, at making this payment. what i struggle a little bit weird, and obviously any decent person would struggle with knowing a large sum of cash has been handed over to such an unsavoury individual, but i wonder whether or not, the police could perhaps, i
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couldn‘t do theirjob, they do, by and large an excellentjob, could they not have persuaded that individual it would have been in his best interest, particularly as a convicted criminal of a particularly nasty crime to do that as a public service by way of atonement for his offending? maybe they went down that route and maybe it was a bit more brutal than that, but it cannot sit co mforta bly brutal than that, but it cannot sit comfortably knowing that £10,000 of taxpayers money is in the pocket of a convicted criminal. but the chief co nsta ble a convicted criminal. but the chief constable was very convincing in terms of saying those 18 criminals would not be behind bars and would still be out there abusing children and young people, were it not for their actions. but i think he acquitted himself very well, the chief constable this afternoon. perhaps if we are able to talk to him later, we can ask him about your point of persuasion. but as you have
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suggested, he was very clear, it came back to this time and again and said it was this man‘s relationship with others that allowed the police to detect and prevent such crimes. almost suggesting that stopping these men and one woman in their tracks, meant other vulnerable young women were not going to be abused in the future. do you accept, unpalatable though this is, that ultimately the most important thing was to stop the abuse and therefore by definition, protect other women? again, it comes back to, does the end justify the means? i am airing towards supporting what happened because yes, people have been protected. we also need to bear in mind that the police do have a very difficultjob to do. these crimes are particularly difficult to cross astute —— prosecute and the use of
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insiders, the use of criminal informants has gone on since we have had policing. nobody is going to feel particularly comfortable, well done for doing that, but if there was no alternative, and i would question if there was an alternative, but if there wasn‘t, you could argue it was money well spent. but i feel deeply uncomfortable saying that. to the broader issue and the scale of this crime, these crimes, the scale that has been thrown up by these series of trials. the chief constable was interesting on this, he called it these particular sort of crimes, the challenge of our generation. he said we really need to look, communities need to look to see if they are doing enough to change attitudes. i am interested in your thoughts about this because regrettably these crimes seem to keep happening? we
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have been talking about these crimes off and on, on this programme for many years. they are crimes that endure and i think the chief co nsta ble endure and i think the chief constable is right, it is the cancer of ourtime and constable is right, it is the cancer of our time and it has been identified as such and at long last. we have recently, i have personally spoken to a chief constable and an assista nt spoken to a chief constable and an assistant chief constable. that simply wouldn‘t have happened five or ten years ago, so i think there is more cooperative working, there is more cooperative working, there is more cooperative working, there is more understanding of the devastating consequences of these crimes. which, again you and i have discussed many times and how they have been swept under the carpet, ignored and often in the past, the victims have been denigrated. thank god we are moving on now and i think the police in northumbria have set a good example and let‘s hope the other 43 forces of 42 forces around the country treat these crimes with
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the country treat these crimes with the same level of seriousness they have been dealt with here. it is a nationwide, it is a global problem. it isa nationwide, it is a global problem. it is a global problem and a national scandal we have got to keep pursuing, because it is about protecting children. it is interesting that you feel things are moving on to some degree, do you have a little more confidence now that if a young person, male or female goes to any figure of authority and reports this abuse going on, they will be believed, they will be taken seriously, perhaps in a way that hasn‘t happened in the past?|j perhaps in a way that hasn‘t happened in the past? i have more confidence today than i did last year or five years confidence today than i did last year orfive years ago. confidence today than i did last year or five years ago. i have to keep confidence in the independent enquiry into child sexual abuse for failings of institutions, which is currently going on. i would urge victims and survivors who perhaps haven‘t given their testimony or haven‘t given their testimony or haven‘t been able to go to the
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police, go to the independent enquiry. come forward and give their testimony because it will be heard, action will be taken if appropriate and when people come forward, hopefully, we are there as a victim‘s panel to ensure people coming forward are properly supported. i would go back to our concern being for... it is good these criminals are behind bars, but i hope and pray the victims here are the people who remain at the centre of support, because these crimes really do have a lifetime devastating consequence, as we have discussed, sadly, many times. sadly, yes we have. i fear we discussed, sadly, many times. sadly, yes we have. ifear we may be discussing it again, but peter it is a lwa ys discussing it again, but peter it is always good to hear your thoughts. thank you forjoining us tonight. in
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fa ct, thank you forjoining us tonight. in fact, we can stay with this story because joining fact, we can stay with this story becausejoining me from newcastle is the chief constable of the northumbria force steve ashman. thank you forjoining us here tonight. i do want to talk in broader terms about the convictions that have been secured, about the problems and the crimes you force has been investigating. but you will appreciate i want to start by talking about payment to a convicted rapist, to act as an informant, because you have acknowledged yourself already, that has caused concern. can i put to you first of all, one key point is our last guest raised. the chief executive of nate parker. he said he understands the need for the use of import months —— informants, but what is tricky is paying someone with that sort of criminal conviction. he wants to know from you whether your force had
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tried to persuade this individual to give you the information he gave you, almost as a public service, to persuade him to give this information by way of doing the right thing? was persuasion something that you had considered you were able to pursue with him? that would be very difficult for me to give a precise answer to in terms of that individual informants, that is known as xy. as a general principle, i would expect that avenue to be explored. people do it for a range of motives. some are financial, and with organised criminals, it is about revenge on arrival criminal. some of them give us information for moral reasons because they find it appalling and distressing, that they are part or they know of a pattern of offending
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and they want to tell us for all the right reasons. you would expect us to explore all those reasons with every single informant. i could not tell you whether that was. i do expect it to have been covered with that informant, yes. would you have been reassured and confident throughout, what i know was a very, very long investigation, that this person, a convicted rapist was monitored and wasn‘t in a situation where, for example, could reoffend? people following this case might think, you have put him in touch with young people and this man has a conviction for rape and that‘s not right. absolutely, that is the case. it is difficult for me to give perhaps the reassurance i think people would want to hear, and around the exact nature of that individual‘s deployment. i hope people would understand this, if i
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we re people would understand this, if i were to do that, would lead to other people identifying who he is and i cannot go down that road. we are specific with the deployment of that individual. he was never deployed into sex parties or sessions, never. it didn‘t happen. there were specific instructions and parameters given to that individual. the judge commented on he wasn‘t suggested to have been involved in any pattern of offending and has not been a witness. it has been about an individual who was in a position to provide specific, factual information about the whereabouts, the location, the identity of individual people, their movements, the cars they were driving, perhaps their associates and perhaps their plans for future events that had yet to ta ke plans for future events that had yet to take place. that is what we paid him forand to take place. that is what we paid him for and that is what we were able to gather, to nurture, to turn into evidence. that is what has led, iam into evidence. that is what has led, i am confident, too vulnerable women and girls who have been safeguarded
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and girls who have been safeguarded and protected from becoming victims themselves are becoming victims again and dangerous men have been put in prison. and that i can categorically state as the case. to the scale of this investigation. i was struck in your news conference when you talked about these crimes being, as you put it, the challenge of our generation. i would like you to expand on that and say what your force has learned and what other forces could line, because you feel these crimes are not going away?|j think these crimes are not going away?” think it is difficult to tell whether or not we have had a lasting impact on this and my commitment is, 0peration sanctuary will continue and that is a clear commitment this force has made and the police and crime commissioner has made it clear we wished to do everything we can to drive it out completely. we are not different to anywhere else, necessarily. what has been different here, we actively sought out victims. so over 700 potential
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complainants and that distilled down into 200 actual victims. we approached anybody we thought could have been a victim of this offending. it could have been the case that after those initial reports came in, one option would have been to actively reinvestigate them and move on. we have dedicated over 50 officers to this and there is no sign of that letting up. in terms of the scale of it, yes it is shocking. what i am confident at is we are lifting the stone, we are not ignoring this at all and we are determined out, as we were three and a half yea rs determined out, as we were three and a half years ago when we set this up, to drive this out and that has cause lasting damage to those people who think it is acceptable to behave in this way. we are making progress, we have had tremendous support from different community groups and that will continue over the next difficult weeks and months as people
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come to terms with that pattern of offending. do you think there might be victims of this gang out there who you have not yet found, or i will repeat that, do you believe there are people out there who are victims of this gang that you have not found or have not yet come forward ? not found or have not yet come forward? i can't rule it out, i really can‘t. little bit of trouble with my earpiece, but i think i got the question. i cannot rule out there are more people out there. police have confidence and we will believe you, come forward, you can trust us. it doesn‘t have to be a police officer you deal with. quite often we have introduced them to volu nta ry often we have introduced them to voluntary sector organisations, to social workers. we can make sure it is dealt with in a different way, but you can trust us and we will support you. what is evident today,
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there are a number of young women and girls who felt confident enough to trust us and we have not let them down. we have held their hand in an appropriate way, in a lengthy, tortuous journey and we have reached the end of this now and i am confident it will give some of them some closure. we appreciate your time tonight. that is the chief co nsta ble of time tonight. that is the chief constable of the northumbria force, steve ashman. thanks very much. there will be more on that story coming up shortly on the six o‘clock news. this is bbc news at 5.00 — the headlines: we will have a weather forecast coming up in the next few minutes, but just one coming up in the next few minutes, butjust one more story to bring you before that. with its rugged mountains and pristine lochs, it‘s no surprise that the isle of skye attracts large numbers of tourists. but the island has now become so popular that its services are being stretched to the limit — and police scotland is warning visitors to plan ahead, and make sure they‘ve booked somewhere to stay arriving. shirely spear, who you saw in that
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report, runs the three chimneys restaurant on the isle of skye and also chairs the island‘s tourism group. shejoins me now from edinburgh. thanks very much forjoining us this evening. your restaurant and so much else on the island is so successful that things are getting a little crowded, is that fair? to an extent, but scotland is extremely busy at the moment. edinburgh is extremely busy. everywhere you go, there is lots and lots of visitors all with huge expectations of a wonderful experience. what we are slightly concerned about is some of the most iconic experiences are becoming a little bit rundown and shoddy and road sides are being churned up
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because there is no parking, facilities, mountain paths are becoming eroded because of the number of people tramping across to see these particular sites. but skye isa see these particular sites. but skye is a huge island, 400 miles of coastline, 50 miles from top to bottom and each area is completely different. there is such a lot to explore, loads to see and do, wonderful food explore, loads to see and do, wonderfulfood and explore, loads to see and do, wonderful food and drink all sourced locally. the best seafood in the world. you don‘t have to just come to skye to go to these iconic sites. what are you saying to people essentially, what would... you run a restau ra nt, essentially, what would... you run a restaurant, you want people to come, but what are you saying to them to make it manageable for everybody?” have been in business for 32 years and it is always busy at this time of year. but what i would say to
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people, you have to to plan ahead, be organised, don‘t just people, you have to to plan ahead, be organised, don‘tjust turn up willy—nilly, expecting to find accommodation easily or somebody to book a table for dinner. you have to be organised and plan ahead. it is a big journey and a great place to come to, but be sure you have got it all planned. we are working now with our local councillors and also our local msp to try and get some decent, very sound funding and build a proper strategy for the future. we are keen to protect skye and its environment because that is what it is, a beautiful place and we don‘t wa nt to is, a beautiful place and we don‘t want to spoil that. and also the experience of visitors have is second to none. just a quick thought, some of the things you mentioned the island was lacking, i wonder if you are looking for some central funding wonder if you are looking for some centralfunding somehow wonder if you are looking for some central funding somehow to improve some of the facilities you are talking about? i certainly am. the
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remote and rural areas of scotland deserve a great deal of help and support at the moment. the local councils are very stretched, local councils are very stretched, local councils cover vast areas. we need some strong support from the scottish government because tourism is now the major economic driver for the country, as a whole. we employ hundreds of people of all different ages and abilities. 0k. the island is dependent on tourism. good to talk to you. i have looked at your website, can‘t wait to visit at some point. time for a look at the weather. it was a decent day across scotland today. not so further south and east across east anglia and south—east england. the rain only moving very, very slowly southwards. there is more wet weather to come and could
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cause some transport disruption and localised pudding. this evening and the night, we will lose some of the rain from the south east. could missed patch and it will turn chilly, specially in the countryside further north and west. cool start tomorrow but a bright start and just about across the board we are looking at a fine day with some sunny spells. might take a while to clear early rain from kent and patchy rain into the far north—west of scotla nd patchy rain into the far north—west of scotland but generally it is fine, 17 to 22 degrees. pleasantly enoughin fine, 17 to 22 degrees. pleasantly enough in the sunshine. more rain spreading in from the west during friday, but at this stage, the weekend doesn‘t look too bad. more weather coming up in the news at six, which is next. tonight at six: the newcastle network who groomed, drugged and raped young girls and women over a four—year period.
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seventeen men and one woman, mostly of asian descent, have been found guilty. there were dozens of victims. despite the abuses they‘ve suffered, the victims have demonstrated great bravery in recounting their experiences in court. 0peration sanctuary relied on evidence from an informant, a convicted child rapist who was paid £10,000 — that‘s controversial. there are dangerous men behind bars and vulnerable people protected, that would not have been the case if we had not used that informant. this isn‘t the first abuse network that‘s been exposed. what more can be done? also tonight:

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