Four arrested in child abuse swoop

By Sam Myles

Four men have been arrested on suspicion of rape and the facilitation of a child for the purpose of sexual exploitation, by officers investigating the organised sexual exploitation of children. The Child Sexual Exploitation Proactive Investigation Team carried out search warrants at four different locations in Southend on 1 February, seizing digital devices and cash.

The four men have been released on bail until 24 February.

Detective Sergeant Ben Rushmere, from the CSE Proactive Investigative Team, said: “The protection of the most vulnerable residents of Essex will continue to be a priority for Essex Police and, together with our partners, we will proactively disrupt any activity that puts those members of our community at risk.

“If you or someone you know believe they are subject of sexual or criminal exploitation please contact your local police or the local authority.

“We will listen to you and take the necessary action to ensure the victim is safeguarded.”