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Man charged as part of Operation Sanctuary

Police have charged a man as part of Operation Sanctuary.

Yakup Demirci, 40, of Stanton Street, Newcastle, has been charged with sexual assault by touching a female aged 13 or over.

The charges relate to an incident on Saturday, November 29, in which two women were sexually assaulted in a taxi in the Newcastle area.

He appeared before Newcastle Magistrates' Court today, Monday, 1st December.

Operation Sanctuary started in January this year and focuses on offenders who set out to target vulnerable women and girls.

More arrests in Operation Sanctuary

Northumbria Police make arrests in Operation Sanctuary Credit: ITV News

Five men have been arrested in Newcastle on suspicion of conspiracy to rape. The men were detained after a series of house searches in connection with Operation Sanctuary. They are currently helping police with their enquiries.

Five addresses in Newcastle were visited - two in Longbenton and three in the west end of the city.

Operation Sanctuary started in January this year and focuses on offenders who set out to target vulnerable women and girls.

Two sentenced for sexual offences

Two men have been sentenced as part of Operation Sanctuary.

Hafeez Cole Oye-Dada, 44, of Hampstead Road, Newcastle has been sentenced to 10-years in jail for rape.

Moses Ologbenla, 31, of Ellesmere Road, Newcastle, has been sentenced to 6-years in jail for sexual activity with a girl under 16.

"We are pleased the court has recognised the dreadful crimes these two men have committed. They will have time to reflect on their abhorrent actions while behind bars.

"They targeted their victims, knowing they were underage and preyed on their vulnerabilities.

"This was with the intention of luring them into a false sense of security so they could sexually assault and rape them, all while under the influence of significant amounts of alcohol, which they supplied.

"I commend the girls' courage in coming forward. I sincerely hope they can move on with their lives in the knowledge that these men will not pose a threat to other vulnerable girls and women in the foreseeable future."

– Northumbria Police Assistant Chief Constable Winton Keenen

County Durham businessman jailed as part of Operation Sanctuary

Gurhan Sayan. Credit: Northumbria Police

A businessman from Chester-le-Street has become the first to be sent to prison as a result of Operation Sanctuary, a major Northumbria Police investigation into allegations of a series of sexual offences.

Gurhan Sayan targeted his victim in Newcastle city centre when she stumbled and lost her shoe. The 28-year-old woman, who had been drinking, could not remember how she got into his car, but woke to find she had been driven some distance from the city centre.

She was then attacked inside the vehicle. At Newcastle Crown Court today Guhan Sayan was sentenced to three years and nine months in prison. He was also given a 10-year Prohibition Order, banning him from transporting females he does not know in his car. He'd pleaded guilty to an sex assault charge at at earlier hearing.


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