Five men have been arrested in Bolton on suspicion of a catalogue of rapes and sexual assaults on a teenage girl.

The girl, now aged 15, is alleged to have been abused by the men over a 15 month period between 2011 and 2012. The arrests follow an eight month investigation by the serious sexual offences unit of Greater Manchester police, which was launched when the girl first spoke to police in January.

The men arrested are aged between 24 and 58 years old and have now been bailed until the 15th January.

Police have described the investigation as ‘painstaking’ due to the fact that some of the suspects used nicknames rather than their own names.

Police have not as yet identified any other victims in the case, however officers are expected to carry out further warrants in connection with the investigation. They have confirmed that there are other people who they are ‘actively seeking to speak to’ as part of the investigation and that there may be further arrests in future.

Det Insp Simon Davies said ‘This is the result of a complex and detailed investigation that has been running over several months into allegations of serious sexual assaults committed against a young girl. Greater Manchester Police takes all allegations of child sexual exploitation very seriously and we have a team of experienced and highly-skilled officers who are carrying out a thorough investigation’

Specially trained staff are said to be providing support to the victim during what is no doubt an extremely traumatic time for her.

Police are urging people who believe they are victims of sexual exploitation to contact them.

Social services have worked with the girl’s family previously and are currently working with Greater Manchester Police in support of the investigation.

As we have seen in a number of recent abuse cases, allegations of this kind are investigated rigorously and victims are actively encouraged to come forward. It is hoped that by doing so it will raise awareness and enable agencies to carry out preventative work within the community and identify young people who are potentially at risk.

Support should then be put in place to help victims come to terms with the abuse and this is crucial in helping the victim move forward.

Farleys has a team of solicitors who specialise in pursuing abuse compensation claims on behalf of victims. If you would like to discuss the possibility of making an claim for child abuse, please get in touch with us today for free of charge advice. All calls are treated with confidence.