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NSPCC: "Appalled police paid child rapist"

The NSPCC say they're 'appalled' police paid a convicted child rapist as an informant Credit: NSPCC

The NSPCC lead expert on tackling child sexual abuse, Jon Brown has said his organisation are "appalled" that Northumbria Police paid a convicted child rapist to 'watch sex parties' as part of their investigation into the sexual abuse and exploitation of vulnerable women and girls in the West End of Newcastle.

The man, known only as XY, was recruited despite being a sex offender who had drugged an under-age girl and invited another man to rape her after he had done so, Newcastle Crown Court heard.

18 people were convicted of the abuse and exploitation of young girls in Newcastle as part of Operation Shelter.

Some of the vulnerable and women were sexually abused after being supplied with drugs and alcohol.

"We are appalled to learn that police paid a child rapist and planted him in the midst of vulnerable young girls. You just couldn't make it up.

It beggars belief that it would ever have been considered, let alone approved, and serious questions must be asked about the force's approach to child sexual exploitation operations.

However good the force's intentions, their misguided actions run entirely counter to all current child protection procedures and what we know about sex offenders and could have compromised this investigation.

What we mustn't forget in all this is the victims who were preyed on by a series of despicable men for their own sexual gratification. It is right that these men are now behind bars."

– Jon Brown, NSPCC


Alan Shearer: "I commend their bravery and honesty"

Former England and Newcastle striker Alan Shearer commended the bravery of footballers who have spoken out about historical sex abuse as he was honoured for his charity work.

Alan Shearer commends victims of football abuse after picking up CBE

Former England and Newcastle striker Alan Shearer commended the bravery of footballers who have spoken out about historical sex abuse as he was honoured for his charity work.

Alan Shearer receiving his CBE from Prince William. Credit: PA

The Premier League's all-time top scorer, who is an ambassador for the NSPCC, said he was "saddened" to hear of further allegations as the scandal continues to engulf the sport.

Shearer, who scored 30 goals in 63 appearances for the Three Lions, spoke as he was made a CBE by the Duke of Cambridge during a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

Asked about the current mood in the world of football, the 46-year-old said:

We feel very sorry for what's happened to the guys and commend their bravery for coming forward, which hopefully will help others come forward as well.

It hasn't been a great period for football - but we have to commend the guys' bravery.

– Alan Shearer, former Newcastle United striker


Alan Shearer to get CBE from Prince William

Alan Shearer is to get a CBE today Credit: PA

Former Newcastle and England striker Alan Shearer is to be honoured for his charity work.

The Premier League's all-time top scorer is to be made a CBE by FA president the Duke of Cambridge (Prince William) at a Buckingham Palace ceremony.

Shearer was given the award in the Queen's Birthday Honours in June for his charitable services to the community in the North East.

NSPCC: Premier League or Sunday League - child safety must be top priority

A children's charity has called on everyone to make child safety a priority "whether you're Premier League or Sunday League" following the sentencing of former England footballer Adam Johnson.

The NSPCC, which described Johnson's behaviour as "horrifying" and "inexcusable", has sent a letter to the Football Association expressing concerns about a potential "cultural problem" within the sport.

In the letter, the charity said it was concerned about the approach taken by Sunderland Football Club when confronted with a serious child protection issue.

"We are worried this could be a cultural problem within football as a whole and find it concerning clubs may not see incidents such as these as a child protection issue.

This is not only about one rogue player that behaved badly, but a club that seemingly did not have child protection priorities embedded into their culture. It was not equipped to handle these allegations and seemingly did not deal with them appropriately, or indeed seriously."

– NSPCC letter
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