Teenage boy allegedly raped at hotel used by refugees in Walthamstow

A hotel at an undisclosed location being used to house refugees  (PA)
A hotel at an undisclosed location being used to house refugees (PA)

A teenage boy is alleged to have been raped at a hotel in Walthamstow that is used to house refugees.

The reported incident is one of two suspected sex attacks on children at the building that are both being investigated by Met Police.

Local MP Stella Creasy has urged Home Secretary Suella Braverman to resign over the claims, first reported in The Guardian.

A man was charged on September 11 with one count of sexual touching of a child under 13, the Metropolitan Police said.

A spokesperson said: “He was bailed by the court to appear at Stratford magistrates court on Wednesday 9 November.

“The charge relates to an incident at a hotel in Waltham Forest on Friday 9 September. The victim is being supported by specialist officers.”

Scotland Yard said it had received a report of rape at the same hotel on October 5.

In a statement, the force added: “Officers attended and spoke to the victim, a boy in his teens, and his family.

“Specialist support is being provided. A man, aged in his 30s, was arrested at the scene and taken into custody.

“He was bailed to return on a date in early January 2023.”

Stella Creasy, MP for Walthamstow, had already raised concerns to the Home Secretary in the Commons that 150 children were being squeezed alongside another 350 adults, “seven or eight to a room” at a hotel in her constituency.

After the latest claims, she called on Suella Braverman to resign.

She tweeted: “On Monday Suella Braverman dismissed my concerns about safeguarding refugee children in a hotel. She showed she couldn’t care less. Now we know of at least two sexual assaults of children on her watch. She’s wholly unfit to be in office and must resign.”

Grace Williams, the leader of Waltham Forest council, wrote to Braverman, saying: “We have continuously expressed our view that accommodating families with children in contingency hotels is detrimental to children’s wellbeing. It is now evident that it is a risk to their safety too.”

A Home Office spokesperson told The Guardian: “It would be inappropriate to comment on an ongoing police investigation. We work around the clock with the police and local authorities to ensure the children in our care are safe.”

It came as the Home Office admitted to making a “massive error” after a group of asylum seekers were left at Victoria station without accommodation, a charity volunteer has said.

According to reports, a group of some 40 migrants were transported from Manston, the Kent processing facility which is facing severe overcrowding, and taken to London to stay with friends or family on Tuesday.

However, around 11 of them had nowhere to go on arrival - forcing them to flag down staff at Victoria train station for help.