Paedophile ring to be sentenced

The defendants awaiting sentence Photo: ITV News Meridian

The victims of a paedophile ring are expected to attend court today to see the gang who groomed them for sexual exploitation be sentenced.

The seven defendants were found guilty of a catalogue of offences against the vulnerable underage girls including rape, trafficking and organising prostitution at the Old Bailey last month.

They returned to the court yesterday for the first of a two-day sentencing hearing, where Judge Peter Rook warned he was considering life terms for some of them.

Statements from some of the victims' parents were read out to the court, which described how the men had ruined theirs and their daughters' lives.

One of the girls had considered suicide while another suffers from post traumatic stress disorder as a result of the abuse, which took place between 2004 and last year in the Oxford area.

Six of the defendants listened from the dock as prosecutor Noel Lucas QC outlined some of the victim impact statements, but the court heard that Mohammed Karrar, 38 - who was found guilty of 18 offences, including rape of a child under 13 and procuring an abortion, conspiracy to rape, child prostitution and trafficking - had refused to come up from the cells.

He was convicted last month along with his brother, Bassam Karrar, 34, and another set of brothers, Akhtar Dogar, 32, and Anjum Dogar, 31. Kamar Jamil, 27, Assad Hussain, 32, and Zeeshan Ahmed, 28, were also found guilty following the five-month trial during which the jury was told the gang sexually exploited girls as young as 11.

Police missed several chances to catch the gang members who plucked the girls from the streets and care homes to be drugged and raped.

Some victims relived their ordeals during the trial - describing how they were groomed, beaten, betrayed and sold into prostitution around the country.

Police and social workers were forced to apologise for not protecting the girls.

Akhtar Dogar was found guilty of 11 offences including rape, child prostitution and trafficking.

Anjum Dogar was found guilty of 9 offences including rape, child prostitution and trafficking.

Bassam Karrar was found guilty of 9 offences including rape of a child under 13, conspiracy to rape a girl under 13, child prostitution and trafficking.

Jamil was convicted of 8 offences including rape, conspiracy to rape and child prostitution.

Hussain and Ahmed were each convicted of two counts of sexual activity with a child.

Judge Rook is expected to pass sentence from 2.05pm.