Merseyside brothers jailed for sexually abusing girls


Two brothers from Birkenhead on Merseyside have been given long prison sentences for sexually abusing young girls.

Last month, Vinothan Rajenthiram, 27, and Ilavarasan Rajenthiram, 26, were found guilty of a total of thirty offences, committed between 2010 and 2016 and ranging from rape, perverting the course of justice and sexual assault.

At Liverpool Crown Court this week, Vinothan was sentenced to a total of 18 years; 14 years in custody and 4 years on extended licence, and Ilavarasan to a total of 22.5 years; 18.5 years in custody and 4 years on extended licence.

In a lengthy trial, the jury heard that both brothers groomed girls, some of whom were as young as 14 , by offering them free sweets and cigarettes when the girls visited their convenience store on their way to or from school or college.

The girls were encouraged to drink large quantities of alcohol to the point where they became very drunk and would then be subjected to sexual assaults or persuaded to engage in sexual activity.

A police investigation began in January 2016, after the parents of a 14-year-old girl reported her missing when she failed to return home after an evening out.

She had spent the night at a flat in Wallasey with Ilavarasan Rajenthiram who had engaged in sexual activity with her. As a result of the accounts given by witnesses in relation to this incident, the police broadened their enquiries and discovered other victims of grooming and abuse, going back over a period of several years.

Helen Morris, Senior Crown Prosecutor with Mersey-Cheshire Crown Prosecution Service said: "These men were serial abusers who focussed on their own sexual gratification and gave no thought to the effect their actions would have on their young and vulnerable victims.

"They systematically targeted young girls - some of whom they knew to be under the age of consent - grooming and befriending them for the purpose of sexually exploiting them.

"Many of the girls believed they were in genuine relationships with the Rajenthiram brothers and were devastated to discover that, on the contrary they, along with many others, had been cynically duped into being abused.

"I would like to thank these victims for their courage in coming forward and undergoing the painful process of having to recall details of their exploitation and abuse. Their evidence has been pivotal in securing these convictions.

"I would also like to commend the thorough investigation conducted by Merseyside Police and for the evidence they gathered that enabled the Crown Prosecution Service to bring this prosecution to a successful conclusion."