Social workers hid fact they knew teenage mother was at risk from sex grooming gangs SIX YEARS before she was brutally murdered
From the Daily Mail
Social workers knew for six years that a teenage mother, murdered for bringing shame on the families of two Pakistani men who had used her for sex, was at clear risk from predatory Asian gangs. Laura Wilson, 17, from Rotherham had been groomed by a string of British Pakistanis before she was stabbed and thrown into a canal to die for informing her abusers' families of the sexual relationships.
Her killer Ashtiaq Asghar, who was 18 at the time, was given a life sentence and will serve a minimum of 17-and-a-half years after he pleaded guilty to murdering Laura in October 2010.
But it has now emerged that Rotherham County Council's social services were well aware she was at risk and had received information about certain adults suspected of targeting her from the age of 11.
Last week the council's Safeguarding Children Board published a serious case review but key passages which reveal they knew she was at particular risk from Asian men had been blocked out with black lines. The council went to court in an attempt to tried to suppress the hidden information after a uncensored copy of the report was leaked to the Times newspaper but they have now abandoned legal action.
The uncensored report confirms that Laura, identified as Child S, had dealings with 15 agencies and identified 'numerous missed opportunities' to protect her. Details hidden included the knowledge that at the age of 13 Laura and a friend had been given alcohol by men at a takeaway who then asked what she would give them in return. She had also been referred to a child sexual exploitation project just three months after her 11th birthday.
Another censored passage reveals that Laura had been 'mentioned' during a 2009 police inquiry that eventually led to the conviction of five Pakistani men for sex offences against three underage girls. While the published report mentioned the fact that a friend, who Laura knew when she was 10, was 'thought to have become involved in sexual exploitation', it concealed the succeeding passage which read: 'with particular reference to Asian men'.
Laura was murdered in October 2010. She was repeatedly knifed by 18-year-old Ashtiaq Asghar before pushed her into a South Yorkshire Canal, where he used the point of the knife to force her head below the surface as she fought to stay alive. He exchanged a series of texts with married friend and mentor Ishaq Hussain, 22, who had also had an affair with Laura, and who the judge described as a man who regarded white girls as ‘sexual targets, not human beings’.
In one message, sent a day before he killed Miss Wilson, Asghar wrote: ‘I’m gonna send that kuffar (non-Muslim) bitch straight to Hell.’
She gave birth to a daughter in June last year, but Mr Hussain refused to accept that the child was his. Four months later, and just days before she was murdered on October 12, she ‘shamed’ Asghar and Mr Hussain by informing their families of her relationship with both men.
She told Asghar’s mother she loved her son and ‘wanted to have babies’ by him. But Mrs Asghar was furious and attempted to hit Miss Wilson with a shoe, branding her ‘a dirty white bitch’ who should ‘keep your legs closed’, the trial was told.
Alan Hazell, Chair of the Rotherham Local Safeguarding Children Board, said: 'We refute in the strongest possible terms any suggestion that information was redacted from the published report for any reason other than to protect the interests of Laura’s daughter, immediate family and other third parties.'
In a statement following the publication of the review Mr Hazell denied that more could have been done to save Laura.