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Sexual Offences

The Sexual Offences Act 2003 updated the law, much of which dated back to 1956.

The main provisions of the Act include the following:

  • Rape is widened to include oral penetration
  • Significant changes to the issue of consent
  • Specific offences relating to children under 13, 16 and 18
  • Offences to protect vulnerable persons with a mental disorder
  • Other miscellaneous offences
  • Strengthening the notification requirements and providing new civil preventative orders

Find out more about how we prosecute sexual offences

Crimes involving young people

Young people as victims and witnesses

Being a victim or a witness to a crime is not easy, but we work hard to bring offenders to justice. Throughout the justice process we will support young victims and witnesses and treat them with dignity.

Find out more about how we support young victims and witnesses

Youth crime

The Crown Prosecution Service acts in partnership with other agencies such as the police, the youth justice board, children's services, courts and youth offending teams. Each area of the CPS has a youth justice specialist who oversees the prosecution of youth crime in their area.

Find out more about how we prosecute youth crime

Ten men sentenced for child sexual exploitation in Rochdale


Ten men have been sentenced for multiple offences relating to the sexual exploitation of eight victims in the Rochdale area following two trials at Minshull Street Crown Court in Manchester. Nine of the offenders were sentenced today and one man was sentenced last year after pleading guilty at the start of the first trial. They were sentenced to 127 years in total.

All of the offenders committed offences against one girl who was aged between 14 and 18 when most of the abuse happened. Three of the men also committed offences against other victims.
Following the sentencing Alison Cartmell, Senior Crown Prosecutor from CPS North West Complex Casework Unit said: "Firstly I want to pay tribute to the victims who gave evidence against their abusers in the two trials. Their courage and fortitude enabled police and prosecutors to build strong cases against these men and to bring them to justice.

"The offenders targeted their victims because of their age and the vulnerable situations they were in at the time. They pretended to be their friends and, in some cases, their boyfriends, but in fact they set out to groom them and exploit them for their own ends. Some of the men plied their victims with large amounts of alcohol or drugs as a way of controlling or even incapacitating them. Some used violence and threats to intimidate and coerce them into having sex.

"The CPS has worked closely with Greater Manchester Police and prosecuting counsel throughout this complex and lengthy investigation to help support the victims and to ensure the strongest possible case was put before the juries.

"These cases are dealt with by dedicated and specially trained police officers and prosecutors and we will continue to work together to bring further charges and prosecute other offenders wherever there is evidence to do so.

"I hope that today's outcome will act as a warning to those who abuse and exploit children in this way that tackling these crimes remains a priority for police and prosecutors and I hope it provides other victims of sexual abuse with the confidence to contact the police and to seek support."


  • Afraz Ahmed was sentenced to 25 years in prison
  • Choudhry Ikhalaq Hussain was convicted in his absence and is currently wanted by police. He was sentenced in his absence to 19 years in prison
  • Rehan Ali was sentenced to 7 years in prison
  • Kutab Miah was sentenced to 9 years in prison
  • Mohammed Dauood was sentenced to 16 years in prison
  • Abid Khan was sentenced to 6 years 6 months in prison
  • Mohammed Zahid was sentenced to 5 years in prison
  • David Law was sentenced to 11 years in prison
  • A man who cannot be named for legal reasons was sentenced to 23 years in prison plus 8 years on extended license.
  • Mahfuz Rahman pleaded guilty to three counts of Sexual Activity with a Child and was sentenced to 5 years and 6 months in prison at the beginning of the first trial.


Notes to Editors

  1. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926
  2. For the latest in breaking news from the CPS Press Office follow @cpsuk and visit our official News Brief -
  3. The CPS consists of 13 Areas in total, each headed by a Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP). In addition, there are three national casework divisions: Specialist Fraud (formerly Central Fraud and Welfare, Rural & Health Divisions), Special Crime & Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime. CPS Direct is a 'virtual' 14th Area which provides charging decisions to all police forces and other investigators across England and Wales - it operates twenty-four hours, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
  4. At 31 March 2015 we employed a workforce of approximately 5,895 staff (full time equivalent), including around 2,255 prosecutors and 3,288 caseworkers and administrators. Further information can be found on our website:
  5. The CPS, together with police representatives (formerly ACPO) and media representatives, has developed a Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media. This sets out the type of prosecution material that will normally be released, or considered for release, together with the factors we will take into account when considering requests. Read the Protocol for the release of prosecution material to the media.