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Six in court on child sex charges

A woman and five men have appeared in court accused of a string of child sex offences including child prostitution and rape.

The alleged offences relate to 17 victims, 16 girls and one boy, aged as young as 12, in South Yorkshire. Many were vulnerable and in care at the time of the alleged offences, Sheffield Crown Court heard.

All defendants appeared in the dock together as a date was set for their trial. The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is accused of 41 offences relating to victims aged between 12 and 20. She is charged with arranging or facilitating a child sexual offence, inciting or causing a child to become a prostitute and inciting or arranging or facilitating the prostitution of a child.

The offences are said to have taken place between 2006 and 2010. Sheffield men Lee Unwin, 26, from the city's Nethergreen area, and John McLachlan, 65, of Firth Park, are accused of paying for the sexual service of a child.

Kareem Ahmed, 29, of Manor, Sheffield is accused of arranging or facilitating travel for the commission of a sexual offence, and Bashdar Hamadamin, 26, of Burngreave, Sheffield, faces a charge of rape. A fifth man, who cannot be named, is facing three counts of sexual assault, one on a child under the age of 13.

The alleged offences are said to have taken place between 2004 and 2011 in the Sheffield area.

Judge Michael Murphy QC said: "This is a case that's going to involve many young people, and many young people in care."

All defendants were bailed to appear at Sheffield Crown Court again on October 8 to enter pleas.

A seven-week trial has been scheduled at the same court for February 17 next year.

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