Rotherham trial: Alleged victim rejects defence claims she invented decade of abuse

Arshid Hussain outside Sheffield Crown Court
Arshid Hussain outside Sheffield Crown Court

A central witness in the Rotherham child sexual exploitation trial has angrily rejected repeated accusations by defence barristers that she had lied about being abused for a decade.

The alleged victim broke down in tears during parts of her cross-examination about her evidence at Sheffield Crown Court.

Sajid Bostan leaving Rotherham Magistrates Court earlier this year

Sajid Bostan leaving Rotherham Magistrates Court earlier this year

Arshid Hussain and Sajid Bostan are alleged to have played key roles in abuse of the girl lasting around a decade as part of a child grooming gang also involving five other defendants, who all deny the charges against them.

Hussain, 40, and Bostan, 38, are also alleged to have raped the woman at a pub when she was around 20, an incident which the woman says resulted in her child being conceived.

Tahir Khan QC, representing defendant Arshid Hussain, said her account of abuse at his client’s hands which includes multiple rapes starting from when she was aged 11 were ‘lies you have made up’.

Speaking from behind screens in the witness box at Sheffield Crown Court, the now 36-year-old woman said: “No they are not.”

Mr Khan said the woman, known as Girl B, had ‘jumped on the bandwagon of complaints others have made’ about his client.

“None of these things happened,” he said.

Mr Khan said Hussain was in prison around the time when the alleged rape that resulted in the birth of a child is said to have happened. The woman said the incidents she had described were true.

David McGonigal, representing Sajid Bostan, said his client accepted having a ‘consensual’ sexual relationship with the complainant when she was in her early 20s but denied playing any part in her being abused during the 1990s.

He told her: “You are either making up the fact it was him or you are mistaken and it was carried out by someone else with a similar name.”

When Mr McGonigal asked why there were some ‘inconsistencies’ in statements she had given about a number of alleged incidents of abuse, she told him: “I have lived with this for 20-odd years. You haven’t.

“You have been dealing with this case for seven months. You are paid to get him [Bostan] away from it, have a nice happy little life.”

Asked why she had not gone to the police earlier, the woman said: “I wasn’t in a fit state. I had eating disorders, mental health, I tried to kill myself.

“It is only in the last six or seven years I have got better.”