Rotherham child abuse victims take legal action against police and council

Alexis Jay with abuse report
Alexis Jay with abuse report

Lawyers representing 17 girls who were victims of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham say they are confident of reaching out-of-court settlements with the police and council.

Switalskis Solicitors had been representing 15 girls taking legal action against Rotherham Council and South Yorkshire Police prior to the publication of Tuesday’s damning independent inquiry. David Greenwood, from the firm, said a further two girls have come forward following the publication of the report.

He said the amount of evidence provided by the inquiry means it is now unlikely cases will have to go to court before compensation can be agreed.

“We are hoping we will be able to reach some kind of out-of-court settlement. There is a real weight of evidence in our favour,” he said.

“If that is not going to take place, we will have to issue some proceedings.”

Mr Greenwood added: “In each of the cases I am handling there have been failings by individual social workers but, more importantly, we have been able to identify that Rotherham Council and South Yorkshire Police failed to act on information which could have led to the arrest of perpetrators.

“Rotherham Council and South Yorkshire Police missed clear opportunities to prevent the sexual exploitation of dozens of girls in Rotherham.”