Were police morally right to pay a paedophile to inform?

Were police morally right to pay a paedophile to inform?

The application failed, and despite being paid nearly £10,000 by Northumbria Police to help with their investigation into child sexual exploitation in Newcastle, XY did not give evidence in any of the Operation Sanctuary (an investigation into child sexual exploitation in Newcastle) trials.

Police have defended recruiting the man, claiming his involvement was crucial to identify members of a grooming gang that abused more than 100 victims over four years. Those he has jailed know who he is.

After he was recruited, XY was arrested in September 2015 on suspicion of inciting sexual activity with a child after a teenage girl claimed a man approached her and made an indecent proposition.

The jury did not hear evidence from the informant, a British-Asian man in his 30s with links to the defendants.

Jon Brown, from the charity, said: "You just couldn't make it up".

"It beggars belief it would ever have been considered, let alone approved".

Dame Vera Baird QC, singled out for praise, 20 victims of sexual exploitation, who gave evidence against these men as part of the operation.

The BBC's Inside Out programme reported that a defence barrister told the court: 'This is a case where a rapist was put into the field where he would be with vulnerable young women when intoxicated.

Judge Penny Morland dismissed the application to throw out the case, but described XY's evidence as "inherently unreliable" and "clearly dishonest".

He said that was broken when he was made to testify in court.

"I can't begin to tell you the number of times I've asked for research to be carried out, I did in front of Parliament five years ago, but no-one is doing that". Operation Shelter and Operation Sanctuary doesn't represent anything like the last exposé of a form of criminality that preys on children born of social breakdown, state failings and poverty.

The men would contact them at all hours of the day and night to say they had alcohol and drugs for them and would pay for taxis to collect them.

Members targeted vulnerable women and girls, meeting them on social media, at so-called "sex parties" or even preying on them in the street under the pretext of offering a warm auto or safe place to say. Nor for that matter can they be found in the process and practice based reviews carried out by the Office of Surveillance Commissioners (OSC) or the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC). Two officers and myself.

If it wasn't for me I know they wouldn't have got those people.

'I would talk to defendants, find out what they said to their barristers and what their barristers said to them'.

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Responding to criticism - including accusations from an "appalled" NSPCC that police planted the informant - Mr Ashman told BBC Breakfast: "It's quite surprising and disappointing for the NSPCC in particular to adopt the stance they have".

"But I'm very, very surprised at this as a tactic".

XY said he was given a list of around ten Asian names by the police and these belonged to people he had spent time with.

So if the question is whether or not the decision is defensible, the answer is yes it is.

He also refused to confirm whether or not he was asked to do anything illegal.

"There should be praise too for the partnership working of Northumbria Police and Newcastle City Council".

"Some people might disagree with that, I get that - it's a problem that we wrestle with ourselves - but I've got to be content on the back of 93 convictions, over 300 years of imprisonment, without the verdicts that we received yesterday, this was the right thing to do overall".

He said: 'They (the police) would not show me their badges.

"The victims that have come forward should be commended for their bravery and I would encourage any other survivors of abuse, irrespective of where in the United Kingdom they are based, to contact their local police force". "These victims have had to endure multiple abuse and multiple failings of those who are tasked with safeguarding them".

He added: 'The handlers have been nothing but supporting. Yes, I may have had a bad past but when I left prison I tried to make a difference.

Northumbria Police Chief Constable Steve Ashman.

During the trials, the court heard how Northumbria Police paid a convicted child rapist £9,680 (US$12,500) over 21 months to spy on the network, attending parties where victims were suspected of being abused.

He said the lawful and regulated use of informants is always overseen by a senior police officer.

"However in the case of XY it is clear that his relationships with others have allowed the police to prevent and detect some of the most serious crimes occurring in our communities, this would not have been possible through conventional methods".

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