Manchester

Eleven arrested amid child sexual exploitation inquiry

Eleven people have been arrested as part of a crackdown on child sexual exploitation in south Manchester.

Police said six warrants had been executed and 11 people, aged between 19 and 38, had been arrested over the past month.

The alleged offences include sexual activity with a child, attempted indecent assault, inciting a child into prostitution, abduction and rape.

Greater Manchester Police said the 11 had all been bailed.

The arrests followed intervention work in the Longsight area, a spokesperson for the force said.

They were part of Project Phoenix, which is made up of police, children's services, health services, and children's charity Barnardo's and covers the Salford and Manchester areas.

More arrest warrants

Det Insp Debbie Oakes, of Greater Manchester Police (GMP), said she expected more warrants and arrests as the force continued its investigation.

"We would encourage anyone who is a victim of this kind of abuse to come to either us, a family member or the charities and support agencies who are out there and help us bring the offenders to justice," she said.

Lynn Perry MBE, regional director for Barnardo's, said: "We are pleased to be at the heart of an inter-agency partnership in Greater Manchester tackling child sexual exploitation; supporting and enabling young people to speak out and providing child victims of sexual exploitation with appropriate, long term support."

Last month, BBC Radio Manchester's Jonathan Ali revealed nearly 250 children were "at risk" of being sexually exploited across Greater Manchester.

Figures from local councils show that out of 246 children being dealt with by councils in the county, 111 were deemed to be at high risk of being sexually exploited.

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