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Newcastle grooming gang rapist has sentence cut for being 'disproportionate'

These are the kinds of serious organized crime ignored for a decade by the very national unit set up in 2004 to tackle serious organized crime. Without any criticism by the government or any news channel, the government quietly renamed the organization, calling it "The National Crime Agency".


A rapist who groomed vulnerable teenagers as part of a sexual exploitation gang in Newcastle has had his "excessive" sentence cut on appeal.

Habibur Rahim was one of 19 offenders jailed as part of Operation Shelter which exposed the sex abuse ring.

The gang exploited vulnerable teenage girls, who were given drugs and alcohol and then sexually abused.

Rahim, of Friar's Way, Fenham, was convicted of rape, human trafficking, conspiracy to incite prostitution and drugs offences.

He was jailed for 29 years in August last year - one of the lengthiest sentences handed out to the group.

But now the 36-year-old's jail term had been cut down to 25 years after a judge described the original sentence as "disproportionate".

Rahim was said to have regularly attended "sessions", where teenagers and women were given drugs and alcohol and preyed upon.

He was involved in offences committed in both the east and west end of Newcastle, and was not deterred even when he attracted police attention.

At one property, he raped a "heavily intoxicated" victim, who had believed he was a friend and was left having suicidal thoughts.

At the Court of Appeal on Friday, Judge Peter Lodder QC said Rahim was a "prolific offender", but that he had been too heavily punished.

Some consecutive sentences Rahim had received should have been ordered to run concurrently as they reflected similar offences, he said.

"The total sentence is disproportionate, having regard to the offending overall," he told the court.

"Accordingly, the total is 25 years, rather than 29 years."

A second offender, 33-year-old Taherul Alam, of Normanton Terrace, Elswick, had his appeal against his eight-year term refused.

Alam had been convicted of conspiracy to incite prostitution, supplying drugs and attempted sexual assault.

Judge Lodder said Alam had run a property in Elswick as a "sessions" address, where he supplied drugs to girls.

"A total sentence of eight years, given the nature of the offending as a whole, is justified and is not manifestly excessive," said the judge.

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