June 2016

Friends jailed after sexually exploiting underage schoolgirls they had plied with cigarettes and alcohol

koromaandngasa

Two rapist friends have been jailed after sexually exploiting underage schoolgirls they had plied with cigarettes and alcohol .

Osmon Koroma and Max N’Gasa raped and assaulted 12 children, some as young as 13, over a four year period before they were arrested last year.

A judge commended the pair’s victims, who were forced to relive their ordeals during the six-week trial , and were praised for “undoubtedly” saving other children who may have been targeted by the men.

The offences were carried out between 2010 and 2014, when the girls were aged between 13 and 15.

The men befriended the young girls, who would frequent the shopping parade below Koroma’s flat, and offer to buy them cigarettes and alcohol in return for sexual acts, the court heard.

Police said the grooming was at such a level that some of the girls believed they were in relationships with the men, despite the significant age gap between them.

They were arrested on March 12 last year and charged in October following an intelligence-led child sexual exploitation investigation by detectives from the Sussex Police Safeguarding Investigation Unit (SIU), working with partners including West Sussex Childrens Services.

The men, who have maintained denials that they have ever known or met the girls, appeared in custody at Lewes Crown Court today to be sentenced following their earlier convictions on May 18.

Koroma, a 31-year-old labourer, was sentenced to 14 years in jail after being convicted of eight offences against five girls, including rape, two sexual assaults and five offences of sexual activity with a child.

N’Gasa, 25, was handed an 11 year sentenced for 10 offences against seven girls, including two rape charges and eight offences of sexual activity with a child.

The gardener was found not guilty of one sexual assault and one offence of attempting to carry out sexual activity with a child.

Both men will be on the sex offenders register for life and given indefinite Sexual Harm Prevention Orders (SHPOs), prohibiting them from contact with each other, and preventing them from having unsupervised contact with children under-16.

Speaking after the sentencing, Detective Chief Inspector Miles Ockwell said: “We are glad to know that justice has now been done for the girls.

“As Judge Jeremy Gold said in passing the sentences, it was clear that Koroma’s flat acted as a magnet for the girls, whose physical maturity outstripped their emotional maturity.

“He observed that Koroma and Ngasa were warned by the police in July 2012 about their behaviour but chose to ignore the warning.

“When the investigation re-commenced in 2014 the full extent of their behaviour became apparent.

“Judge Gold commended all the girls without exception for giving evidence, especially in view of being called liars or told they were mistaken whilst giving evidence.

“When referring to the Victim Personal Statements, he stated that Koroma and Ngasa’s actions have had a profound and lasting effect on the girls.

“Young girls were sexually abused by one or other of these defendants and sometimes by both.”

He continued: “The evidence centred around a flat. Osman Koroma lived there during those years and Max Ngasa was his friend and a frequent visitor there.

“Both men befriended young schoolgirls who would frequent the shopping parade, groomed them and ultimately exploited them by requesting sexual acts in return for purchasing cigarettes and alcohol on their behalf.

“Some of the victims knew each other, but others did not, as this offending went on with numerous children over four years.

“Young girls were sexually abused by one or other of these defendants and sometimes by both.”

He continued: “The evidence centred around a flat. Osman Koroma lived there during those years and Max Ngasa was his friend and a frequent visitor there.

“Both men befriended young schoolgirls who would frequent the shopping parade, groomed them and ultimately exploited them by requesting sexual acts in return for purchasing cigarettes and alcohol on their behalf.

“Some of the victims knew each other, but others did not, as this offending went on with numerous children over four years.

May 2016

Men guilty of grooming and abusing teenage girls

TWO men groomed girls with alcohol and cigarettes before sexually abusing them.

Osmon Koroma and Max N’Gasa have now been convicted of a total 18 sexual offences.

The friends bought the girls alcohol and cigarettes and invited them up to Koroma’s flat at the time in Wick Parade, Littlehampton.

Osmon Koroma, a labourer, 31, of Norton Road, Hove, (left in picture) has been convicted of eight offences against five girls.

They were: one rape, two sexual assaults and five offences of sexual activity with a child.

Max N’Gasa, a gardener, 25, of Cranmer Avenue, Hove, (right in picture) has been convicted of 10 offences against seven girls.

They were two offences of rape and eight offences of sexual activity with a child.

The jury verdicts in each case were unanimous.

N’Gasa was found not guilty of one sexual assault and one offence of attempting to carry out sexual activity with a child.

The offences were committed between 2010 and 2014 and the victims were aged between 13 and 15 at the time.

Koroma and N’Gasa were arrested on March 12 last year and were charged in October last year.

Detective Chief Inspector Miles Ockwell said: “Young girls were sexually abused by one or other of these defendants and sometimes by both.

“Both men befriended young schoolgirls who would frequent the shopping parade, groomed them and ultimately exploited them by requesting sexual acts in return for purchasing cigarettes and alcohol on their behalf.

“Some of the victims knew each other, but others did not, as this offending went on with numerous children over four years.

“Such was the level of grooming that took place, many of the girls considered that they were in relationships with the pair, despite the obvious significant age gap between them.

“I want to pay tribute to all of the girls who had the courage to stand up in court and tell their stories.

“In doing so, they have undoubtedly saved other children who may have been targeted by this pair.”

The two men will be sentenced on June 7.