THE level of detail an alleged child abuse victim gave in evidence about defendants who claim they have never met her was “pretty impressive”, a prosecutor told a jury.
In her closing speech at the trial of eight men on child sex offences, Miss Michelle Colborne said the issues between the prosecution and defence were that defendant Sageer Hussain “says he’s not the Siggy who befriended and raped the woman”.
Miss Colborne continued: “Ishtiaq Khaliq - he says he's not the Ishy who behaved the way described by the three female complainants.
“Asif Ali is not the Ali who raped the central complainant and Mohammed Whied says he’s not the Whiddy who sat on the bonnet of his car and encouraged Siggy to rape her as well.
“These four men say they are not the men the central complainant describes, yet they all fit the description of them given you may think.”
The court has previously heard Ali, Whied, and Sageer were cousins.
They are on trial at Sheffield Crown Court with five other men for sexual offences said to have occurred in 2003 when the central complainant was 13.
Khaliq is also charged with indecently assauting two other women between 1999 and 2001, which he denies.
Miss Colborne said the men all fitted the nicknames, ages, areas they lived in Rotherham and family information the main complainant, now 27, gave.
“This information came from the woman, not from any media coverage”, said Miss Colborne, who added that despite the complainant not picking Whied out on a police ID parade, she had still given other correct details about him.
The prosecutor said the alleged victim’s “level of detail was pretty impressive” if she had never met Ali or Whied.
Miss Colborne said: “Asif Ali confirmed in his evidence, because neither Sageer nor Whied got in the witness box, that the three were cousins, close in age and that he’s the son of Qurban Ali, who is blind.”
The prosecutor added that the complainant even pointed out to the police that “they had arrested the wrong Ali” during their investigations.
“Why did she stop police arresting the wrong man if she's just making life difficult for men in general?” asked Miss Colborne.
Miss Colborne said Sageer’s barrister would argue she identified him as her abuser because she had seen him on television in around 2014, but that this defence was flawed because she had told police in 2003 that Sageer had raped her.
Sageer shook his head throughout the prosecutor’s speech.
Miss Colborne added that co-defendant Basharat Hussain’s defence would argue she had never met him, but the jury had already heard he has convictions against two different girls for what the complainant has accused him of doing — sexual assault in his blue Subaru car.
“It assists you in assessing these convictions make it more likely she’s telling the truth and has identified the right man,” the prosecutor said.
Miss Colborne asked the jury to think about the evidence given by the central complainant’s parents about how they had received threats, pleaded with authorities for help and moved abroad to escape the men's clutches on their daughter.
“If she had made it all up, if everything was a lie, who were these men phoning the house? Her mobile phone?” the prosecutor asked.
“Who were the men threatening to gang-rape her mum if she had made it all up?
“For two years the family were telling social services, the police, anyone that would listen that their daughter was suffering.
“She needed psychiatric help, was home schooled, suffered from mental health difficulties.
“If she has made it up, she’s watched her family suffer, let her parents sell their home, their business, leave the UK all for lies about men who say they have never met her.”
Defence counsel for each of the eight defendants will begin their closing speeches to the jury tomorrow.
The defendants deny all the charges.
The trial continues.
Child sex abuse trial: the defendants and charges
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