MANCHESTER: A man who approached young girls in a Rochdale park before offering them cash in exchange for sex has been jailed. 33-year old Shahid Razzaq of Hare Street, Rochdale was sentenced to two years and three months on Wednesday 17 April 2019 at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court after pleading guilty to one count of attempting sexual assault of a girl aged over 16. He also pleaded guilty to intentionally attempting to cause or incite a girl under 16 to engage in sexual activity.
According to Manchester police, he will remain on the sex offenders’ register for the next 10 years and was also handed a sexual harm prevention order that will last for the same amount of time.
On Thursday 2 August 2018 a girl aged 16 was stood outside Touchstones Museum, Rochdale waiting for a friend. Razzaq stopped in front of her. Asked for a light then offered cigarette, asking where she was going and if she wanted to meet up with him later.
After she declined, he stepped in front of her before making lewd comments and attempting to grab her. She ran off and contacted the police.
The following day the girl recognised Razzaq in footage that a group had posted on Facebook. The footage, taken on Thursday 2 August, showed Razzaq being confronted in Broadfield Park by a member of the public. It emerged that Razzaq had approached a group of young girls, aged 15, 13 and 12 on the park and offered them money for sex.
After being detained by the member of the public, Razzaq was arrested and found to be carrying more than £300. In interview he denied the offences committed in the park and outside the museum.
Detective Constable David Read of GMP’s Rochdale District said: “Razzaq exhibited a dangerous pattern of offending, which escalated from inappropriate and lewd advances towards a lone, young woman, to attempts at engaging in sexual activity with minors.