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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

The Role of The Crown Prosecution Service

The Crown Prosecution Service is the government department responsible for prosecuting criminal cases investigated by the police in England and Wales.

As the principal prosecuting authority in England and Wales, we are responsible for:

  • advising the police on cases for possible prosecution
  • reviewing cases submitted by the police
  • determining any charges in more serious or complex cases
  • preparing cases for court
  • presenting cases at court

Find out more about the role of the Crown Prosecution Service

Three men have been convicted of sexual assault and rape against four young girls and teenagers in Bristol


The group targeted vulnerable girls as young as 13 and provided them with alcohol and marijuana before demanding sex. Three men have been found guilty by a jury at Bristol Crown Court of charges of sexual assault, rape, trafficking for sexual exploitation and supplying a controlled drug of class B.

Huw Rogers, Head of the Complex Casework Unit for CPS South West said: "The abuse in this case is chilling. The defendants groomed, sexually abused and raped four young girls, from the ages of 13 to 16, over a four-year period. The victims were deliberately targeted as they were perceived to be vulnerable and impressionable.

"The defendants' relationships with the victims focused on complete control, ensuring they were always in charge. They wanted sex from the girls and demanded this from them.  The victims did not have the freedom to consent to any of these acts, and on some occasions were threatened so that they could not leave.

"I would like to thank the witnesses and victims for their courage in coming forward in this case."


Details of the charges:

Sakiriya Sheikh convicted of 3 counts of sexual assault, 2 counts of trafficking in the UK for a sexual offence, 4 counts of rape and two counts of supplying cannabis- imprisoned for 16 years

Mohammed Ismail Dahir convicted of 2 counts of rape- imprisoned for 8 years

Abdirashid Abdulahi convicted of 2 counts of rape- imprisoned for 8 years

Notes to Editors

  1. For the latest in breaking news from the CPS Press Office follow @cpsuk on Twitter and visit our official News Brief -
  2. For media enquiries call the CPS Press Office on 020 3357 0906; Out of Hours Pager 07699 781 926