Child sexual exploitation


Tackling child sexual exploitation (CSE) and bringing offenders to justice is a priority for South Yorkshire Police. We are now operating with a deeper understanding of child sexual exploitation. 

Here we will bring you updates about what we are doing to tackle child sexual exploitation.

Since the publication of the Alexis Jay report South Yorkshire Police has made significant progress in tackling child sexual exploitation but we understand more needs to be done.

There has been an increase of 62 police officers and staff dedicated to tackling issues such as child sexual exploitation, domestic abuse, missing from home and female genital mutilation (FGM). We are absolutely committed to achieving justice, stopping the harm and preventing future offending.

The National Crime Agency is carrying out an independent investigation into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham over the period covered by the Jay report at the request of Chief Constable David Crompton.  

The Force has referred a number of complaints to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) and they are carrying out an independent investigation.

On 30 September 2015 South Yorkshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Dr Alan Billings launched a review into South Yorkshire Police’s handling of reports of child sexual exploitation.

It is being led by Professor John Drew and is looking at how the Force has handled reports of child sexual exploitation to ensure that everything that can be reasonably known about the past is known.

The aim of the review is to whether South Yorkshire Police has understood and acted upon the findings of reports and inspections into matters of child sexual exploitation. It will also look at whether the Force’s response to safeguarding children and young people has been adequate, not just in Rotherham but across the whole of South Yorkshire.

To read more about the review visit the website:

To find out more about what the force is doing to tackle child sexual exploitation visit our frequently asked questions, watch our video and view our infograph below.

Click the infograph below to view a larger version.

This section gives you a break down into the number of referrals, live investigations and criminal proceedings currently taking place across the Force. We will update this section each month.

Referrals received monthly from October 2015

A referral to police is any concern that has been reported and can come from a number of sources including a school, social services or a concerned family member. It does not necessarily mean there has been an offence committed.

Officers fully investigate all referrals and where an offence has been committed, an investigation will be launched. In other cases where no criminal offences have taken place other agencies may offer support to the young person referred.  











Offences recorded monthly from October 2015

These are the number of offences that have been recorded monthly from the referrals received.










Number of charges and cautions monthly from October 2015

This shows the number of charges from October 2015 with offences committed at any time not just the ones reported within that time period. 
















Live investigations at the end of September 16.

This is the number of investigations we have across the force at this time.





In this section, we will bring you news of people that have been charged or sentenced in relation to child sexual exploitation




Group convicted of multiple child sexual offences in Rotherham - 17 October 2016

Eight men have been convicted of multiple child sexual exploitation offences against three young girls in Rotherham between 1999 and 2003. Read more




Matthew Wood jailed for sexual abuse

Rotherham man jailed for sexually abusing children and women - 14 October 2016 

A 24-year-old man has been jailed for 22 years after admitting sexually abusing five women and girls in South Yorkshire. 

Matthew Wood appeared at Manchester Crown Court to receive his sentence after pleading guilty to 15 offences against five victims at an earlier hearing. Read more




Rotherham man given community order for sexual offences against girls - 16 September 2016

A 20-year-old man has been given a three-year community order after admitting two sexual offences against two girls under the age of 16. Read more 


Terry Gibbons

Barnsley man jailed for 26 years for sexual offences - 7 September 2016 

A man who abused two young girls over a six-year period has been jailed for 26 years after pleading guilty to 26 charges, including rape and sexual activity with a child. 

Terry Gibbons, 44, of Kingsway, Thurnscoe, was sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court. Read more




Lee Hatfield, jailed for sexually exploiting teenager

Man jailed for sexually exploiting teenager - 5 August 2016

A 29-year-old man has been jailed for three years and eight months for sexually exploiting a teenage girl from Rotherham, as well as possessing indecent images and videos of children. 

Lee Hatfield, of Manor Close, Rawmarsh, appeared before Sheffield Crown Court to receive his sentence after pleading guilty at an earlier hearing. Read more 




Evolve CSE team launch, Rotherham

Transforming child sexual exploitation services in Rotherham - 4 July 2016

Rotherham is transforming the way it deals with child sexual exploitation and now it is delivering a ground-breaking service to tackle it. 

Evolve - the multi-agency specialist team tackling child sexual exploitation - moved into new premises in Rotherham on Friday 1 July. Read more



Global recognition for Operation Makesafe - 29 June 2016

The work of South Yorkshire Police and students from Sheffield Hallam University on Operation Makesafe, a child protection training package, has been recognised in a global study on the sexual exploitation of children in the travel and tourism industries. Read more 


Mark RichmondMan jailed for sexually abusing child in Doncaster - 29 June 2016

A 27-year-old man has been jailed for four-and-a-half years for sexually abusing a 14-year-old girl in Doncaster. 

Mark Andrew Richmond, of Whitcomb Drive, Rossington, appeared before Sheffield Crown Court on Tuesday 28 June to receive his sentence after pleading guilty to sexual activity with a child at an earlier hearing. Read more 



Jason MaddenRotherham man jailed for child sexual offences - 28 June 2016 

A 39-year-old Rotherham man has been jailed for 12 years, with an extension of four years, for sexually abusing five children as well as possessing and distributing indecent images of children.

Jason Madden, of Leopold Street, Dinnington, appeared before Sheffield Crown Court today (Tuesday 28 June) to receive his sentence after pleading guilty to numerous offences at an earlier hearing. Read more 



Stephen Smith Man jailed for sexually abusing teenagers in Rotherham - 27 May 2016

A 44-year-old man has today (Friday 27 May) been jailed for ten years for sexually abusing two teenagers in Rotherham. 

Stephen Smith, of Creighton Avenue, Rawmarsh, was found guilty of ten sexual offences (seven counts of sexual assault, one count of sexual activity and two counts of sexual activity with a child) following a trial at Sheffield Crown Court in February this year. Read more



Owen Smith 20 years behind bars for Sheffield sex offender - 10 May 2016 

A 50-year-old Sheffield man has been jailed for 20 years today (Tuesday 10 May) for sexually abusing vulnerable girls and women. 

Owen Smith, of Hawley Street, Sheffield, was sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court after being found guilty of multiple sexual offences. Read more 




SYP Atlas Court staff receive Operation Makesafe training - 18 March 2016 

All Atlas Court and Crime Bureau staff for South Yorkshire Police, including call handlers and dispatchers, have received Operation Makesafe training as part of the force's continued commitment to tackling child sexual exploitation. 

Operation Makesafe is a SYP child sexual exploitation training package that has been delivered to a number of industries including hotels and bus companies. Read more 

Force to mark Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day - 17 March 2016

South Yorkshire Police and its partners will be taking part in a range of activities across the region to mark Child Sexual Exploitation Awarness Day 2016, which takes place tomorrow (Friday 18 March). Read more 

Six charged with alleged child sexual exploitation offences in Sheffield - 11 March 2016

Five men and a woman have been charged with 53 child sexual offences relating to the alleged sexual exploitation of a number of girls in Sheffield. Read more 

Man pleads guilty to child sexual offence - 8 February 2016

A 37-year-old man has pleaded guilty to a non-recent child sexual offence in court last week (Friday 5 February). 

Amjad Ali, of Broad Lane, Worksop, appeared at Sheffield Crown Court and pleaded guilty to sexual intercourse with a girl under 13-years. Read more 


Karl Astbury Rotherham man jailed for online child sex crimes - 4 December 2015

A 41-year-old Rotherham man is beginning a five-and-a-half-year jail sentence today after admitting contacting young girls online and sending them sexually explicit messages.

Karl Astbury, of Central Drive, Thurcroft, appeared before Sheffield Crown Court on Wednesday 2 December to be sentenced after pleading guilty to eight child sexual offence charges at an earlier hearing. Read more



Man jailed for Rotherham child sexual offences - 4 November 2015

A 32-year-old man has been jailed for seven years for multiple child sexual offences against a girl in Rotherham.

Daniel Raymond Cooper, previously of Drummond Road, Bournemouth, pleaded guilty at Sheffield Crown Court yesterday (Tuesday 3 November) on the second day of his trial. Read more

Archived news - 1 January - 31 March 2015

Archived news - 1 April - 30 June 2015

Archived news - 1 July - 30 September 2015

Some children are more at risk then others; it is the responsibility of everyone to spot the signs that a child may be vulnerable to sexual exploitation.

The first phase of a new awareness raising campaign was launched with partners across the county in November 2014 to encourage people to spot the signs of child sexual exploitation, and come forward with information about young people vulnerable to sexual exploitation.

The Spot the Signs campaign includes a series of posters depicting 14 different signs that a young person may be a victim of sexual exploitation, as well as the details of support services available. These are currently displayed in prominent public locations including on buses, in shopping centres and doctor’s surgeries.

The artwork for some of the signs is below.


For information about all of the 14 signs please click on the link below:

Spot the signs 

The links below provide top tips for keeping safe.

 Advice for young people




 Staying safe online





Sexual health and relationships advice


For advice on how you can help spot the signs and protect young people from being exploited, please click on the links below.

What can I do as a parent or carer?

What can I do as a teacher?

Anyone with concerns about child sexual exploitation should contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or call police on 101. Always call 999 in an emergency.

Say Something
National helpline run by the National Working Group Network through the charity Missing People call or text: 116 000

If you think you may be a victim and need help in Barnsley please call: 01226 438831

If you think you may be a victim and need help in Doncaster call: 01302 737200

If you think you may be a victim and need help in Rotherham call: 01709 823987

If you think you may be a victim and need help in Sheffield call: 0114 2758411

Support for boys and young men: click here

You can also report online through the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre, click here

Everyday we receive many comments and questions about child sexual exploitation and the work we are doing. In order to answer these questions we have created a list of  frequently asked questions, which will be updated regularly.

Frequently asked questions

South Yorkshire Police does not endorse the views of any third party.