Rotherham child sexual exploitation whistleblower was told by police she was ‘rocking the multicultural boat’

A Rotherham child sexual exploitation (CSE) scandal whistleblower was told by police she was “rocking the multicultural boat”, a misconduct hearing has heard.
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Jayne Senior, who ran the Risky Business youth project in the town between 1999 and 2011, was giving evidence on Monday at a hearing into the conduct of former Detective Sergeant David Walker who is accused of failing to act on some of the information she supplied to him.

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Ms Senior described her “frustration and horror” at how so much of the intelligence she had gathered was not progressed.

Alexis Jay OBE, today August 26th 2014 at Rotherham New York Stadium. Alexis Jay OBE led an independent investigation into child abuse in Rotherham, South Yorkshire between 1997 and 2007, finding that at least 1,400 children had been victims of abuse. See copy RPYGROOM: The report found many shocking incidents of abuse and failures of the relevant authorities to tackle the problems. One young person told the inquiry that "gang rape was a usual part of growing up" in the part of Rotherham where they lived. One of the victims mentioned in the report was referred to children’s services 
when she was 15-years-old as she had been groomed by an older man involved in 
the exploitation of other children.
Tom Maddick / Rossparry.co.ukAlexis Jay OBE, today August 26th 2014 at Rotherham New York Stadium. Alexis Jay OBE led an independent investigation into child abuse in Rotherham, South Yorkshire between 1997 and 2007, finding that at least 1,400 children had been victims of abuse. See copy RPYGROOM: The report found many shocking incidents of abuse and failures of the relevant authorities to tackle the problems. One young person told the inquiry that "gang rape was a usual part of growing up" in the part of Rotherham where they lived. One of the victims mentioned in the report was referred to children’s services 
when she was 15-years-old as she had been groomed by an older man involved in 
the exploitation of other children.
Tom Maddick / Rossparry.co.uk
Alexis Jay OBE, today August 26th 2014 at Rotherham New York Stadium. Alexis Jay OBE led an independent investigation into child abuse in Rotherham, South Yorkshire between 1997 and 2007, finding that at least 1,400 children had been victims of abuse. See copy RPYGROOM: The report found many shocking incidents of abuse and failures of the relevant authorities to tackle the problems. One young person told the inquiry that "gang rape was a usual part of growing up" in the part of Rotherham where they lived. One of the victims mentioned in the report was referred to children’s services when she was 15-years-old as she had been groomed by an older man involved in the exploitation of other children. Tom Maddick / Rossparry.co.uk
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She said at one meeting she was told: “I was going against perpetrators’ human rights, I was rocking the multicultural boat, I was being racist.”

Ms Senior told the tribunal: “I was given lots of reasons to stop passing intelligence.”

But she agreed that this was not said to her by Mr Walker, who is accused of failing to investigate information that teenage sisters were having sex with workers from a car wash and that a council youth worker was passing on the names of vulnerable girls to potential sex offenders.

Ms Senior explained how she had passed on thousands of pieces of information over a period of more than a decade.

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She said on one occasion Mr Walker, who was in charge of the Rotherham Child Abuse Investigation Unit between 2008 and 2012, said to her “how am I supposed to do anything with that, it’s not evidence?”.

The former youth worker agreed that some of the information was too vague to be of any use in itself but she told the panel meeting in Sheffield: “It was a jigsaw. We may have one bit of information and another organisation might have another or another. We put that jigsaw together, as we did on a number of occasions.”

Ms Senior said: “We were constantly being told by the next new face that something would be done, somebody would listen, somebody would help this horror to be stopped.”

She described how she was filled with “frustration and horror” when she went to see a sergeant running neighbourhood policing in part of Rotherham who she said he had not seen any of the intelligence she had supplied to Mr Walker’s unit.

She said: “That still horrifies me to this day.”

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Ms Senior admitted that she used a piece of information about alleged drug dealing to test whether Mr Walker was passing on intelligence.

But she denied being focused on him, saying she had made complaints against more than 30 officers in relation to the Rotherham scandal.

And she agreed, under questioning from Jason Pitter QC, for Mr Walker, that the former detective was a key investigator in Operation Central, which led to five men being jailed in 2010.

Mr Walker, who has now left South Yorkshire Police, denies all the misconduct allegations outlined against him which also involve claims that he failed to record concerns made in a series of emails from Ms Senior.

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These included information that a teenage girl had been raped by a man in the presence of an accomplice, that one suspect threatened young girls with a gun he carried in his car and that a man who had been arrested for sex offences was encouraging girls as young as 10 to visit his home.

When the hearing was opened last month, the panel was told that Mr Walker will argue that non-familial child abuse was beyond the remit of his unit, that he had not been properly trained in CSE and that he was under-resourced.

Mr Walker is one of 47 officers and former officers who were investigated by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) in the wake of the Jay Report, in 2014, which described how at least 1,400 children in the town had been subjected to grooming and abuse by gangs of men between 1997 and 2013.

A full report on the findings of the IOPC’s investigation is expected to be published following the conclusion of this hearing next month.