Care staff ‘knew girl was being groomed’

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Crime Reporter, also covering Barton and Wood Farm. Call me on (01865) 425427

A TEENAGER went missing from a children’s home 126 times and it was the “general consensus”

among staff that she was being groomed, the Old Bailey heard.

A social worker yesterday told the Oxford child sex exploitation trial he noted car registration numbers as he saw men picking up the girl outside.

He worked at the home where the unnamed complainant, known as Girl 4, stayed from March 2007 to mid 2008.

Now a young woman, she claims she was raped and prostituted between the ages of 11 and 15 by brothers Mohammed and Bassam Karrar.

The girl was reported missing when she did not return before her 10pm curfew. But she would sometimes go missing for “a couple of days”, the jury heard.

The care worker said he had seen a “gang” target a home where he worked before.

He said: “People turned up in cars and young ladies would go away from the home. I could see the same thing being repeated.”

Asked by Mohammed Karrar’s barrister, Tracy Ayling, if he thought Girl 4 was being groomed, he said: “This was the general consensus of the whole staff team.” He said incidents were noted and reported to a police liaison officer.

The witness also told the court how in December 2007 the girl had a phone call from a “very aggressive” man called “Mo” and she put it on speaker phone so he could hear it.

Related links

The social worker said violent threats were made and the girl asked the caller if he was going to rape her again. She told him she would be raped “a dozen times” if it meant he would stop calling her, the court heard.

He said the girl was “frightened”, “tearful”, and “defending herself”.

He added: “(She) also threatened Mo with the police, as she could have him done as he was a 33- year-old man having sex with a 13-year-old girl and other underage girls, and that he should be ashamed of himself.

“She wanted to know how he would feel if she went around to his house and asked his wife if she knew what he had been up to and what his children would say.”

He admitted the caller’s number had not been checked and said: “I cannot even remember if I informed police of that conversation.”

The social worker said when the teen arrived at the home she was “very frightened, particularly of males”.

He said: “She wouldn’t trust anybody, she wouldn’t talk to anybody.”

The court also heard Girl 4, who finished her evidence yesterday, had told a social worker she did not want to testify in court as she was “not confident police were able to protect her or her mother”.

And when asked by prosecutor Noel Lucas if she had told the truth, she said: “I have not lied in this court sir.”

The nine defendants deny all 51 counts. The trial continues.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree