Arrests after child sexual exploitation raids in Kent

Person arrested on raid
Image caption The raids involved more than 450 people from various agencies

Raids on an "organised criminal network" believed to be behind child sexual exploitation in the Slovakian Roma community have resulted in 22 arrests in Kent.

Police said the investigation centred on the exploitation of young girls in Folkestone, Dover and Gravesend.

The raids involved more than 450 people from Kent Police, Slovakian police and the National Crime Agency.

Police said "16 vulnerable victims" had been offered support.

The girls are believed to be aged between 12 and 16.

Ch Supt Alison Roden, who co-ordinated the operation, said arrests were also made in Birmingham and Leeds.

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