MORE than 50 Muslim men jailed, awaiting trial or absconded in relation to historic sex abuse horrors in Huddersfield over the past 15 years.
Closer to home, 55 more men arrested and bailed in relation to the same behaviour – the systemic rape and terrorising of vulnerable young girls, coaxed, coerced or forced into sex acts with multiple men using alcohol and drugs as just one means to their end.
And so much of it happened under the deliberately closed eyes and deaf ears of various Kirklees Council departments, directors and officers.
Shame on them. Shame on them all.
As National Crime Agency detectives round up what could be dozens more alleged abusers in Dewsbury and Batley, we can be sure that current KMC chief executive Jacqui Gedman will be crossing fingers, toes and everything else in the hope that the scandal doesn’t taint her tenure – that the victims coming forward dry up before she took the hot seat.
“Lessons are being learned” chants Gedman, “we can only say sorry to the victims,” “lessons are being learned” … “we can only say sorry to the victims”.
Jacqui Gedman may well survive unscathed, other than by association with her failed organisation and its current, deplorable political leader.
But with each arrest, each prison sentence handed down, natural justice calls for former council chief executives Adrian Lythgo and Rob Vincent CBE, and especially long-serving Director of Children’s Services Alison O’Sullivan, to be dragged before a judicial inquiry.
As with their predecessors over the last 30 years, so with Lythgo and Vincent – they maintained a blind myopia to the endemic criminal activities within the district’s Muslim communities.
In the case of the rape gangs, O’Sullivan was closer to the flames.
It’s bitterly ironic that during the years at the heart of the offending, in 2008 Kirklees was named the nation’s Council of the Year. Vincent got a CBE.
O’Sullivan – who presided over similar behaviour in Bradford from 2002-2006 before joining Kirklees, was rewarded last year with the Chair of the National Children’s Bureau.
Did none of them really, ever hear a thing, not so much as a whisper?
Possibly, probably not. But then why not? Call their heads of department, their managers and case workers and have them explain their actions and why so many children’s futures were destroyed, how many sadistic animals were allowed to prosper, for so long.
And for all of those people in power and authority at Kirklees Council, the self-same applies to Kirklees Police.
It is no wonder the Operation Stovewood briefings take place away from Dewsbury Police Station – because who amongst the locals can be fully trusted?
The National Crime Agency should be applauded for its diligence, its persistence, its colour blindness in simply following where the evidence leads.
But when they’ve finished jailing the rapists, they need to pursue with equal vigour the men and women who, out of sheer Political Correctness, presided over it.
Don’t hold your breath.