Shabir Ahmed: the sex gang ringleader who blamed white community for not looking after girls
Shabir Ahmed, the man at the heart of the conspiracy carried on a secret affair with the white teenager who acted as his recruiter.
By Nigel Bunyan
4:07PM BST 21 Jun 2012
For a year he lived in fear that people in his own community might find out about the relationship and ostracise him.
On every occasion the couple had sex he would “go home, say two units of prayer and ask Allah forgiveness for doing wrong”.
He told the jury that fellow Pakistanis would regard him as having “infested” their community by sleeping with a white girl. “It’s not just them who are racist. We are racist too”.
Ahmed, who could not be named during the original trial, cut a belligerent figure in the courtroom, hurling insults at the judge and prosecution barristers and claiming he was the victim of a police-led conspiracy.
He dismissed the allegations against him as “white lies” made up by girls who had built up a profitable business empire by working as prostitutes.
“They were clever girls,” he told the jury. “If they’d gone on Lord Sugar’s Apprentice programme they would have won.
“They knew more Pakistanis than I as a Pakistani know. They knew what they were doing. They were earning good money”.
But for all his bravado he was unable to refute one crucial piece of evidence about DNA found on the clothing of a girl he raped and later trafficked around the north-west.
The defendant came to Britain as a boy in 1967. He settled in Oldham and raised a family, but has been separated from his wife since 2000.
He began the cycle of sexual abuse by plying his 15-year-old victim with vodka and then raping her above a takeaway restaurant in Heywood, Rochdale.
“It’s part of the deal,” he told her. “I bought you vodka, you have to give me something”.
He once threatened to have the teenager killed unless she got into his car, and on another occasion forced her to have sex with another man as a “treat”.
Ahmed blamed the white community for allowing teenage girls to go around unsupervised, so that at a young age they were “trained” in both sex and drinking.
“When they come to us they are fully trained and they start their own business,” he said.