Two members of the Rochdale grooming gang have lost an appeal against deportation after a seven-year legal battle. Rochdale MP, Tony Lloyd, said:
“Following the decision in August that these two men should be deported, as a Member of Parliament for Rochdale I have written to the Home Secretary demanding speedy action and demanding an inquiry as to how, these many years on from the men being released from prison, they are still allowed to walk the streets of Rochdale.”
Notes for editors:-
• The full text of Tony’s letter to the Home Secretary can also be found below:
The Rt Hon Suella Braverman KC MP
Secretary of State for the Home Department
Direct Communications Unit
2 Marsham Street
27 October 2022
Adil Khan and Qari Abdul Rauf
I am writing following the deportation ruling concerning the two above named members of the Rochdale grooming gang.
As you will be aware, these men were given prison sentences for cruel and depraved attacks upon young girls and women. There can be no doubt that on the conclusion of those sentences they should have been speedily deported. This did not happen. Due to the failure of Home Secretaries, those deportations were blocked which then, astonishingly, allowed these men to continue to live in Rochdale with no effective limit on their behaviour and no constraint to protect the women who had been their victims from turning a street corner and seeing their abusers. You may be aware that I have raised these issues with various Home and Justice Secretaries.
I am writing to ask firstly that you now clarify the position of the Home Office as a matter of urgency to ensure that the decision of the court is speedily enacted, especially given that the immigration judges indicated there was “very strong public interest” in deporting the pair as soon as possible.
Equally importantly is the need for an inquiry to learn the very sad lessons from this saga. Specifically we need to understand why the then Home Secretary failed to ensure that deportation orders were issued to be effective at the conclusion of prison sentences that allowed these men to go through a near decade of legal proceedings on the basis that they had renounced their Pakistani nationality, and the extraordinary cost to the tax payer of over half a million pounds in publicly funded legal fees.
Equally challenging is the question as to why there was no conditionality placed on the residence of these men as a condition of their early release from prison. As I have said before, this put their victims at risk of turning a street corner and meeting those who abused them.
It is important that lessons are learned from this case. I hope you would agree that it is scandalous that so many years have gone by with the risks I outlined above to their victims, not to mention the cost to the public.
In conclusion, I raised these issues on many occasions and have met only excuse and evasion. On that basis, I was astonished to learn that the court decision was made in August which prompted me to table questions to your predecessor and the news finally broke in the media yesterday. Once more, evasion. In this era of “integrity, professionalism and accountability”, the time for that must end.
Tony Lloyd MP
Member of Parliament for Rochdale