Glasgow & West Scotland

Task force to probe child exploitation claims in Govanhill

Child abuse Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has urged residents in her constituency to report any concerns about child exploitation to police

Police have set up a task force to investigate abuse claims within a deprived community in Glasgow.

A specialist unit will look into allegations that Roma children in the Govanhill area are being routinely sexually exploited.

The National Child Abuse Investigation Unit (NCAIU) was set up by Police Scotland in 2015.

The department investigates cases of complex child abuse and neglect across the country.

A report in the The Times newspaper earlier this month claimed specialist agencies, social workers and residents in Govanhill were concerned that Roma children were being forced to work as prostitutes.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later urged residents in her constituency to report any concerns about exploitation to police.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Williams said: "Our NCAIU is working with Greater Glasgow police division and partners to robustly investigate concerns raised about child sexual exploitation in Govanhill.

"Anyone with any information or concerns about the safety of children in Govanhill or any other community in Scotland should contact the police or the social work department."

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