Sheffield businessman facing sex abuse charges ‘robbed woman of childhood’

Mohammed Rafiq, accused of sex offences against children.
Mohammed Rafiq, accused of sex offences against children.
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A woman who claims a Sheffield businessman sexually abused and beat her has said her ‘childhood was robbed’ by him.

The complainant is one of three people who claim they were abused by Mohammed Rafiq between 1987 and 2002.

She told Sheffield Crown Court: “I had my childhood taken away from me.”

Rafiq, aged 58, of Horninglow Road, Firth Park, denies committing any offences against the complainants.

He is standing trial on 27 charges including rape, indecent assault, indecency with a child and cruelty to children at Sheffield Crown Court.

Rafiq is said to have abused two girls and one boy over the 15-year period.

One of his alleged victims gave evidence telling the jury she was telling the truth about what she says happened to her.

The offences Rafiq is alleged to have carried out against her are said to have started when she was around 10 years old and include indecent assault, rape and cruelty to a person under 16.

Under cross examination, Howard Cohen, defending Rafiq, put it to the woman that the incidents she had described to the police had not happened.

The complainant said: “It is true and I have sworn to tell the truth.

“This has been the most difficult thing I have done in my life.

“It is true.”

Mr Cohen said her evidence was a ‘tissue of lies’ and she was jealous of Rafiq’s successful life.

The complainant said: “I have come here today and made these statements because my childhood was robbed.

“Nobody can give me my childhood back.

“What I want is for the man who took my childhood away from me to be given the correct sentence and punishment.

“I have a very successful career and a very successful life. I couldn’t care what he has or hasn’t got.”

She said what she had gone through as a child had left her with ‘lots of burdens’.

The court also heard details about Rafiq’s arrest by police in March 2014 and subsequent interview.

He provided a four-page prepared statement to officers, in which he said: “I would never carry out such allegations.”

Rafiq said he had not carried out any acts of sexual or physical abuse.

He then provided ‘no comment’ answers to further questions put to him by officers in an interview lasting around an hour.

The case continues.