Members of an Asian child sex ring abused two schoolgirls, taking advantage of their vulnerability on a “massive scale”, a court has heard.
One girl, who was aged 12 or 13 at the time, alleges that throughout the period she was abused, she was passed between 60 men who had sex with her Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.
Eleven men are on trial accused of committing sexual offences against the youngsters, who had allegedly been conditioned into believing that what they were being subjected to was “normal”.
Jurors at the Old Bailey have heard how both girls came from troubled backgrounds and wanted to feel grown up when they were taken in by the men. The defendants deny a total of 49 offences said to have been committed between 2006 and 2012.
They included the multiple rape of a child under 13, child prostitution and administering a substance to “stupefy” a girl in order to engage in sexual activity.
In all, 45 charges relate to one child who cannot be identified for legal reasons and is known as “A”, and four against a second girl, referred to as “B”.
Opening the case, prosecutor Oliver Saxby QC, said: “This case concerns child sexual exploitation on a massive scale. It features two young girls who were employed and sexually abused from the age of 12 or 13.”
He continued: “Both girls were from unstable backgrounds, making perfect targets. Their lives were ‘off the rails’. They were looking for excitement, for attention. For somewhere to hang out, away from school and home.
“They were wanting to feel grown up. And looked after. And they were easy prey for a group of men wanting casual sexual gratification that was easy, regular and readily available.”
The court heard that one of the girls, known only as A, was abused to a greater degree than the other, known only as B. Jurors were told that both girls were befriended and showered with inexpensive gifts such as alcohol, DVDs, food, and occasionally drugs.
Mr Saxby said: “They were being conditioned, exploited. Their trust was being established. And then they were sexually abused.”
He added that at the time the girls’ ideas of what was right had been “completely distorted”, and that they thought what was happening was “normal” and “natural”.
“Notwithstanding that they were children, they spoke in terms of these men being their boyfriends. And they were passed from man to man – sometimes on a daily basis. The scale of it is, you may agree, horrifying. A estimated that she had sex with about 60 men, almost all Asian.”
The 11 men on trial are accused of being among the men who abused the schoolgirls. Each allegedly acted with “total disregard of the law and the legal prohibition on the sexual abuse of children”.
They lived in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, where the abuse occurred, and some were friends, the jury heard.