A man accused of repeatedly raping a 13-year-old girl in Rotherham told police he was recognisable due to a recent appearance on Channel 4 News.
In an interview with police last year that was read to a jury at Sheffield Crown Court, Sageer Hussain said people 'have to know what I look like' after he appeared on national television to talk about his family.
Hussain, 30, of Clough Road, Rotherham, is one of eight men accused of child sexual exploitation offences against three teenage girls in the Rotherham area between 1999 and 2003. Among the other defendants are his brother and two of their cousins.
He denies four rapes and one indecent assault in relation to one alleged victim, who first reported him to police in 2003. The court has heard no prosecution of him followed at that stage but the now-adult woman spoke to police again in 2013, leading to a new investigation being launched.
In the police interview, Hussain added that allegations against him may be driven by a wish for 'compensation or summat'.
When asked by a police officer why the girl had originally made rape allegations against him back in 2003, Hussain replied: "I don't have a clue. She has probably got it in for me, I don't know."
At a second interview in September 2015, Hussain was informed the girl had participated in an identification parade in which he had been picked out.
The jury heard he continued to deny that he knew the complainant and that 'his family were known in the community of Rotherham'.
The police interviews with his co-defendant Ishtiaq Khaliq, 33, of Carlisle Street, Rotherham, were also read to the jury. Khaliq denies one rape and three indecent assaults involving three complainants.
The court heard all three women picked Khaliq out from identification parade procedures.
Khaliq said the first complainant 'has probably been mistaken', with the second complainant also mistaken. He said 'someone must be giving information' to the third woman.
Mohammed Whied, 32, of Psalters Lane, Rotherham, denies one count of aiding and abetting rape.
Waleed Ali, 34, of Canklow Road, Rotherham, denies one rape and one indecent assault.
Asif Ali, 30, of Clough Road, Rotherham, denies one rape.
Masoued Malik, 32, of Bridgewater Way, Rotherham, denies one rape, one count of conspiracy to commit indecent assault and one of false imprisonment.
Basharat Hussain, 40, from Goole, denies one indecent assault.
Naeem Rafiq, 33, of Clarenden Road, Rotherham, denies one count of conspiracy to commit indecent assault and one of false imprisonment.
The case continues.
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