A group of men accused of sexually exploiting teenage girls have been charged with a range of offences including rape, sexual assault and trafficking.

The suspected sex trafficking ring preyed on vulnerable girls in and around Coventry. The ten suspects, aged between 19-30, have been charged following a police investigation into the alleged exploitation of five girls aged 16-18 at various locations across Coventry between May and September last year.

Some of the girls were in care at the time of the alleged offences, according to West Midlands Police.

Gulfraz Banaris, 20, his 25-year-old brother Ifaraz and Izthkhab Banaris, 24, are charged with conspiracy to traffic girls across the city for the purposes of sexual exploitation. Gulfraz and Izthkhab Banaris are also both accused of rape. All three men appeared before Coventry magistrates earlier this week and were remanded to appear at Coventry Crown Court on November 7.

Isa Iqbal, 21, and his 20-year-old brother Ismail, both cousins of the Banaris brothers, also face trafficking charges and have been remanded until November.

Ricardo Hinkson, 23, Amir Mahmood, 27 and Tasveer Hussain, 30, are due to appear at Coventry Magistrates Court charged with conspiracy to traffic within the UK for the purposes of sexual exploitation.

Saleem Hussain, 30 and Khezer Hussain, 25, are due before magistrates to face charges of sexual assault and rape.

The five victims of the alleged offences are now in council care or living with relatives under safeguarding arrangements and are being supported by specially trained police officers from the public protection unit and Coventry City Council children’s services.

Providing support to the victims at this stage is vital. As a solicitor specialising in abuse compensation claims, we have first hand experience of the devastating effects abuse of this nature can have on the victims’ confidence and mental state.

Chief Inspector Sue Holder of West Midlands Police said: “Protecting young people from harm is a priority for West Midlands Police and the force takes reports of sexual and physical abuse extremely seriously. Anyone convicted of sexual exploitation, in whatever form, can expect to be dealt with severely by the courts’.

At Farleys we have a dedicated abuse team who deal with many cases on behalf of victims of sexual abuse. We understand how difficult it can be to come forward and talk about this, however through our understanding and expertise we are here to help clients secure the compensation they deserve. If you have been affected by any of these issues, please don’t hesitate to get in touch for a free and confidential chat.

By Jonathan Bridge, Child Abuse Lawyer