Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Rotherham abuse scandal: IPCC probe expands

Child on swing Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The Jay report found the abuse of 1,400 children in Rotherham had been ignored by agencies

The police watchdog has said it is investigating complaints against 42 South Yorkshire Police officers over the handling of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said it was looking into more than 100 allegations.

It said complaints had been made against 42 named officers and a number of "unknown" officers.

The complaints include allegations of neglect of duty and of corruption.

In a statement the IPCC said its investigation had "expanded" since it announced in November it was investigating 10 officers involved in incidents highlighted in Professor Alexis Jay's report into child sexual exploitation (CSE) in Rotherham.

The Jay Report, published in August, found the abuse of 1,400 children in the town over a 16-year period was ignored by agencies.

The IPCC said: "Since that announcement we have received 30 complaints relating to South Yorkshire Police's handling of CSE in Rotherham.

"The complaints contain more than 100 allegations against 42 named police officers, both retired and serving, as well as a number of allegations against officers whose identities are currently unknown.

"Work to establish the identity of the unknown officers and to identify any links between the different complaints and incidents is ongoing.

"The allegations range from neglect of duty by failing to adequately investigate on the basis of intelligence or to deal with incidents appropriately, inappropriate comments and suggestions of corrupt relationships between police officers and offenders."

It said it was also investigating a claim that South Yorkshire Police "failed to act on information passed to them in 2004 and 2006 about alleged child sexual exploitation in Sheffield", in relation to two named officers who are now retired.

In a statement, the force said: "South Yorkshire Police has referred a number of allegations to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) in relation to child sexual exploitation in Rotherham.

"We remain committed to assisting them with their independent investigation into any alleged misconduct."

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