Counter-extremist organization Quilliam found that 84 percent of men convicted for grooming gang offenses have an “Asian” background.
The term “Asian” is used in the United Kingdom to describe people from India, Pakistan, and other South Asian countries. The term is also sometimes used for Middle Easterners.
The Quilliam researchers, both of whom are of Pakistani heritage, first began their study into “grooming gangs” to challenge the perception that Muslims with an Asian heritage are overrepresented in the media.
They discovered that 222 of the 264 people convicted for grooming gang-related crimes between the years of 2005 and 2017 are “Asian.” Of the total number of offenders, only 18 of them are white, and another 22 were black. The ethnicities of the last two offenders are unknown.
“We began thinking we would debunk the media narrative that Asians are overrepresented in this specific crime,” said co-authors Muna Adil and Haras Rafiq a statement. “But, when the final numbers came in we were alarmed and dismayed. For both of us being of Pakistani heritage, this issue is deeply personal and deeply disturbing.”
“In attempts to protect the ‘’sentiments’’ of the British Pakistani community, we have failed vulnerable young girls who have suffered years of irreversible damage,” said both co-authors. “Most of these men are of Pakistani (Muslim) origin, and the victims that have come forward so far are almost exclusively young white girls.”
“I’m from the heart of where one of the biggest high profile cases have happened over the last few years, and I’m saying it’s very important that we do talk about it because the problem won’t go away,” said co-author Haras Rafiq in a statement to Sky News.
“We didn’t want there to be a pattern of people from our ethnic demographic carrying out these attacks. But unfortunately we were proven wrong,” he added.
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