- Tyne Tees
- 21 updates
A total of 21 people have now been arrested as part of an investigation into allegations of sexual abuse of teenage girls and young adults in north-east England.
The total number of people arrested as part of Operation Sanctuary is 21, 19 men and two women, all on suspicion of conspiracy to rape.
15 people detained earlier have been bailed pending further inquiries.
Police said some of the victims were in care when the alleged offending took place and that their priority was to protect them and ensure their safety.
The police said the investigation, which was launched a few weeks ago, was sparked after they received information from an alleged victim.
But they indicated that they did not yet know the full scale of the offending and how wide it might reach.
A further three men have been arrested as part of an ongoing police investigation into alleged sexual assaults in Newcastle.
This brings the total number of people arrested to 21, including 19 men and two women, who have all been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to rape.
The assaults are alleged to have taken place with teenage girls and young adult women by a number of men from a range of communities.
Police are urging anyone who knows a victim, or believes they have been a victim themselves, to come forward.
People can contact police on 101 or speak to their local neighbourhood officers who are out and about patrolling in the area or call the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Advice and support is also available via Victim Support on 0845 277 0977 or Childline on 0800 1111.
A further three men have been arrested as part of Operation Sanctuary.
It brings the total number arrested to 18, 16 men and two women, all on suspicion of conspiracy to rape. All 15 arrested yesterday have been bailed pending further enquiries.
Five properties across Newcastle and Gateshead have been searched as investigations continue into alleged sexual assaults on teenage girls and young adult women by a number of men from a range of communities.
Three more men have been arrested and five properties searched as part of Operation Sanctuary.
It brings the number of arrests to 18, 16 men and 2 women.
A 15th person has been arrested in connection with alleged abuse claims in Newcastle.
13 men and 2 women are currently in police custody.
Councillor Nick Forbes, of Newcastle City Council, has been speaking to ITV News about the arrest of 14 people on suspicion of conspiracy to rape after raids across Newcastle.
Northumbria Police have arrested a further six people on suspicion of conspiracy to rape as part of Operation Sanctuary.
The arrests follow early morning raids at 13 houses across Newcastle this morning.
A total of 14 people have now been arrested - 12 men and two women.
Seven men and one woman have been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to rape after early morning raids across Newcastle.
Police officers searched eleven properties after claims of sexual abuse from several alleged victims, some of whom are in care or had been in care.
All of the complaints come from teenage girls or young adults.
Newcastle City Council says it's working very closely with Northumbria Police as part of Operation Sanctuary, the investigation into allegations that a number of teenage girls and young women may have been the victims of sexual assault.
The Council says this is a complex investigation which will no doubt take a considerable amount of time. We recognise it will be very important to consider whether there was anything that could have been done to identify the risk to children at an earlier stage.
We are working with the independent chair of our local Safeguarding Board to consider the appropriate steps.
Latest ITV News reports
25 men and 2 women were held on suspicion of conspiracy to rape as part of investigation into alleged sexual exploitation of teenage girls.