Telford grooming gang leader to stay in jail as prison release is refused

The leader of a grooming gang has been refused release by a parole board – or a move to open prison.

Mubarek Ali.
Mubarek Ali.

Mubarek Ali, 38, was jailed for 14 years in 2012 for his part in a child grooming gang that operated in Telford, which saw children as young as 13 trafficked for abuse.

He was released on November 1, 2017, but was back behind bars less than a year later – June 2018 – after breaking the conditions of his parole.

The latest review was the second since he had been recalled after his 2017 release.

In taking the decision to deny parole the panel said it "could find no evidence to suggest that his level of risk towards other had reduced".

A plan put forward for his release – which was rejected – had included a requirement to live at a certain place, as well as "strict limitations" on contacts, movements, and activities.

A summary of the hearing issued by the parole board said: "Evidence was presented in the dossier regarding Mr Ali’s progress and custodial conduct during this sentence.

"He had not completed any accredited programmes to address his offending behaviour and the panel could find no evidence to suggest that his level of risk towards others had reduced. Report writers did not support his release."

Ali will only be released before 2032 if the parole board decides it is safe to do so.

Ali was convicted with brother Adhel, 31, who was jailed for 18 years.

Ali, also known as Max, was arrested following a police investigation into the gang, dubbed Operation Chalice.

Following an eight-week trial at Worcester Crown Court in 2013, after cases stretching over two years, Ali was sentenced to 22 years; 14 years immediate custody and eight years on licence, for seven offences – four of controlling child prostitution, causing child prostitution and two offences of trafficking in the UK for the purpose of prostitution, involving two of the victims.

The brothers, formerly of Regent Street, Wellington, abused teenagers as young as 13 in Telford and trafficked them around Britain.

The court heard the young girls were offered cash, gifts and free car journeys before being taken to a restaurant to have sex.

Officers said that they also believed up to 200 men from across the country had been involved in the ring – with a “huge percentage of them” unidentified.

Following the latest decision a spokesperson for the Parole Board said: “We can confirm that a panel of the Parole Board refused the release of Mubarek Ali following an oral hearing. The panel also refused to recommend a move to open conditions.

“Parole Board decisions are solely focused on what risk a prisoner could represent to the public if released and whether that risk is manageable in the community.

“A panel will carefully examine a huge range of evidence, including details of the original crime, and any evidence of behaviour change, as well as explore the harm done and impact the crime has had on the victims. Members read and digest hundreds of pages of evidence and reports in the lead up to an oral hearing.

“Evidence from witnesses including probation officers, psychiatrists and psychologists, officials supervising the offender in prison as well as victim personal statements are then given at the hearing.

"The prisoner and witnesses are then questioned at length during the hearing which often lasts a full day or more. Parole reviews are undertaken thoroughly and with extreme care. Protecting the public is our number one priority.

"Under current legislation he will be eligible for a further review in due course. The date of the next review will be set by the Ministry of Justice.”

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