Husband of grooming gang victim killed himself over 'stress of investigation', former police detective claims

Maggie Oliver's comments come after a major report revealed police and council workers in Oldham failed to protect some youngsters from sexual exploitation

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A former police detective constable has claimed a husband of a grooming gang victim killed himself over the investigation.

Victims of grooming gangs in Oldham have received official apologies after a major report said police and the local council failed to protect some youngsters from sexual exploitation.

The report looked into the alleged grooming of children in council homes, shisha bars and by taxi drivers in the town and concluded there was no evidence of a cover-up or “widespread” child sex abuse in those settings.

Maggie Oliver
Maggie Oliver

But the authorities did fail some children, the report concluded.

The report highlighted the case of one girl, identified only as “Sophie”, who was abused aged just 12, after “significant opportunities missed” to protect her.

She went to Oldham police station to report being raped by an Asian man in October 2006.

She was told to come back when she was “not drunk” and was instead taken in a car by a man also visiting the police station, then raped in the vehicle, before being taken to a house and raped multiple times by five different men.

The report found that authorities did fail some children
The report found that authorities did fail some children

Both Oldham Council and Greater Manchester Police (GMP) were accused of being “more concerned about covering up their failures” than acknowledging they failed to take action.

And former GMP officer Maggie Oliver believes that there is “judgement of victims” in grooming gang cases, calling for victims to be “treated with empathy and respect”.

Speaking on GB News’ Dan Wootton Tonight, Ms Oliver told host Patrick Christys: “I think there is absolutely a judgement of these victims, you only have to look at the Sarah Everard case.

“That hit all the media, something was done about it, too little too late, but that victim fitted the profile of somebody we could feel sorry for.

“I’m saying that every child victim of abuse deserves justice, they deserve to be looked after, to be heard, to be treated with empathy and respect.

“And if that happens, if there is no prosecution, a victim can accept that.

She continued: “But what they can’t accept, and Sophie’s case shows that clearly, she spent 15 years trying to get justice.

“In that process, two years ago, her husband actually committed suicide.

“She believes it’s because of the trauma and the stress of fighting to have her case acknowledged and dealt with.

“These failures are going on today, they’re not historical.”

Anyone seeking help can contact the Samaritans on 116 123 or email [email protected] or [email protected]