MPs demand answers from police

Rotherham’s three MPs have written to South Yorkshire Police’s Chief Constable demanding answers about child sexual exploitation prosecutions.

John Healey, writing also on behalf of Sarah Champion and Kevin Barron, asks when the two inquiries announced by former Police and Crime Commissioner Shaun Wright in August 2013 – into historic child abuse allegations and cases – will be published.

The MPs have also asked for:

• confirmation of the numbers of suspects being investigated, and those who have been charged and convicted

• figures on the use of abduction notices

• the inquiry into South Yorkshire Police’s past failings to be overseen by the Independent Police Complaints Commission or National Crime Agency

• information on action being taken to tackle under-reporting of sexual exploitation by boys and Asian girls, raised as a concern by Prof Jay

The letter says: “The fresh council leader Paul Lakin has taken strong steps to declare that the council will do things in a new and more open way, because he recognises the task in rebuilding public confidence and trust.

“We hope that you as chief constable will think hard about taking similar steps, especially as the PCC has at last stepped down and this clears the way for fresh leadership and approach from the police.

“Greater wider confidence in the police – especially that of victims – will be built on seeing you do your job of bringing the full force of justice down on those who have committed such dreadful crimes.

“We want to be sure ourselves, and in turn be able to reassure constituents, that this is indeed the case.”

Read the letter in full