A gang of men who embarked on a “campaign of rape and other sexual abuse” against vulnerable teenage girls in Huddersfield have been given lengthy jail sentences, it can now be reported.
A series of trials, which have so far resulted in 20 men being convicted and jailed, could not be made public because of a blanket reporting ban imposed a year ago.
The ban was lifted by Judge Guy Kearl QC on Friday.
Three trials at Leeds Crown Court this year heard how more than a dozen vulnerable teenage girls were groomed and raped in the West Yorkshire town by a number of men.
Ringleader Amere Singh Dhaliwal, 35, was jailed for life earlier this year and told he must serve a minimum of 18 years in prison by judge Geoffrey Marson QC, who said: “Your treatment of these girls was inhuman.”
Dhaliwal, who has children of his own, was convicted of 54 separate counts, including 22 rapes, involving 11 different girls.
The judge told him: “You treated them as commodities to be passed around for your own sexual gratification and the gratification of others.
“The extent and gravity of your offending far exceeds anything which I have previously encountered.”
The judge went on: “It was a very significant campaign of rape and other sexual abuse.
“Children’s lives have been ruined and families profoundly affected by seeing their children, over months and years, out of control, having been groomed by you and other members of your gang.”
At the end of the first trial, the judge said: “The way you treated these girls defies understanding; this abuse was vile and wicked.
“As cases of sexual abuse with which the courts have to deal, this case comes at the top of the scale.
“None of you has expressed any remorse for what you did.”
He added: “The sentences I pass on you are severe and are intended to be so. They are intended to deter others from behaving in this way.”