Laura Wilson, 17, from Rotherham had been groomed for sex by a string of British Pakistani men
She was stabbed and thrown into a canal to die for informing her abusers’ families of their sexual relationships
Council published review of her case but redacted key passages which reveal they knew she was at particular risk from Asian men
Social workers knew for six years that a teenage mother, murdered for bringing shame on the families of two Pakistani men who had used her for sex, was at clear risk from predatory Asian gangs.
Laura Wilson, 17, from Rotherham had been groomed by a string of British Pakistanis before she was stabbed and thrown into a canal to die for informing her abusers’ families of the sexual relationships.
Her killer Ashtiaq Asghar, who was 18 at the time, was given a life sentence and will serve a minimum of 17-and-a-half years after he pleaded guilty to murdering Laura in October 2010.
But it has now emerged that Rotherham County Council’s social services were well aware she was at risk and had received information about certain adults suspected of targeting her from the age of 11.
Last week the council’s Safeguarding Children Board published a serious case review but key passages which reveal they knew she was at particular risk from ‘Asian men’ had been blocked out with black lines.
The council went to court in an attempt to tried to suppress the hidden information after a uncensored copy of the report was leaked to the Times newspaper but they have now abandoned legal action.
The uncensored report confirms that Laura, identified as Child S, had dealings with 15 agencies and identified ‘numerous missed opportunities’ to protect her.
It states that she eventually became ‘almost invisible’ to care professionals.
WHAT THEY TRIED TO HIDE…
That Laura had been referred to a child exploitation project just three months after her 11th birthday.
That at one point she had been ‘taken into a car with men who encouraged her to drink alcohol’.
That when Laura was 13, she and a friend ‘were given alcohol by men at a local takeaway and were asked what they were going to give them in return’ and that her mother had immediately notified the police
That her mother ‘was shocked when it looked as though Child S was involved with older men ‘ and that ‘she had tried to get the police and social care to do something about it.’
Another censored passage which read: ‘At the centre of the Child S case is the issue of Child S’s potential involvement in sexual exploitation.
Details hidden included the knowledge that at the age of 13 Laura and a friend had been given alcohol by men at a takeaway who then asked what she would give them in return.
She had also been referred to a child sexual exploitation project just three months after her 11th birthday.
Another censored passage reveals that Laura had been ‘mentioned’ during a 2009 police inquiry that eventually led to the conviction of five Pakistani men for sex offences against three underage girls.
While the published report mentioned the fact that a friend, who Laura knew when she was 10, was ‘thought to have become involved in sexual exploitation’, it concealed the succeeding passage which read: ‘with particular reference to Asian men’.
Laura was murdered in October 2010. She was repeatedly knifed by 18-year-old Ashtiaq Asghar before pushed her into a South Yorkshire Canal, where he used the point of the knife to force her head below the surface as she fought to stay alive.
Asghar was furious after the young mother revealed details of their sexual relationship to his Muslim family and was on ‘a mission to kill’.
He exchanged a series of texts with married friend and mentor Ishaq Hussain, 22, who had also had an affair with Laura, and who the judge described as a man who regarded white girls as ‘sexual targets, not human beings’.
In one message, sent a day before he killed Miss Wilson, Asghar wrote: ‘I’m gonna send that kuffar (non-Muslim) bitch straight to Hell.’
In another he wrote: ‘I need to do a mission.’ He talked of buying a pistol and ‘making some beans on toast’, a reference to spilling blood used in Four Lions, a satirical film about suicide bombers.
Asghar is serving life in prison after he pleaded guilty to murder and was jailed for life. Mr Hussain was acquitted of murder by joint enterprise after a retrial.
Sentencing Asghar, Lord Justice Davis told him: ‘I take the view you came under the influence of Mr Hussain who is something of a mentor to you.
‘He seems to have regarded girls, white girls, simply as sexual targets. He does not treat them as human beings at all. You got into that mindset yourself.
‘You no doubt once had feelings for Laura but treated her with contempt in the latter stages.’
In 2007, when Laura was 13, she and her family appeared on The Jeremy Kyle Show. During the programme – about out-of-control children – her sister warned her that ‘your attitude is going to get you in big danger’.
Workers at a child sexual exploitation project later sent a report to social services, but no action was taken to remove her from what became a continuing spiral of sexual abuse.
By the time she was 16, she had embarked on an affair with Mr Hussain, who was then 20 and already married.
She gave birth to a daughter in June last year, but Mr Hussain refused to accept that the child was his.
Four months later, and just days before she was murdered on October 12, she ‘shamed’ Asghar and Mr Hussain by informing their families of her relationship with both men.
She told Asghar’s mother she loved her son and ‘wanted to have babies’ by him. But Mrs Asghar was furious and attempted to hit Miss Wilson with a shoe, branding her ‘a dirty white bitch’ who should ‘keep your legs closed’, the trial was told.
Alan Hazell, Chair of the Rotherham Local Safeguarding Children Board, said: ‘We refute in the strongest possible terms any suggestion that information was redacted from the published report for any reason other than to protect the interests of Laura’s daughter, immediate family and other third parties.’
In a statement following the publication of the review Mr Hazell denied that more could have been done to save Laura.
He said: ‘This is a wide ranging study which shows a very complex situation surrounding Child S and her child which made it difficult for agencies to engage with her.
‘There is no suggestion that anyone could have saved Child S from what ultimately happened to her but clearly her care could have been improved.
There were chances for those agencies to be more proactive in how they dealt with the case and all agencies involved accept that and apologise that the standards of service were not as high as they should have been.
‘It is vital that agencies learn from what happened here and there is clearly a commitment in Rotherham to make that happen. As the report comments, there are already many initiatives in place to ensure that services are now improved.’
Last month following the trial of nine men, mainly of Pakistani origin, who were found guilty of raping and abusing up to 47 girls – some as young as 13 – after plying them with drink and drugs Tory cabinet minister Baroness Warsi hit out at the ‘small minority’ of Pakistani men who see white girls as ‘fair game’ for sexual abuse.
She told London’s Evening Standard newspaper: ‘There is a small minority of Pakistani men who believe that white girls are fair game.
‘And we have to be prepared to say that. You can only start solving a problem if you acknowledge it first.
‘This small minority who see women as second class citizens, and white women probably as third class citizens, are to be spoken out against.’