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BBC Asian Network editor to appear at Sheffield court charged with naming Rotherham child abuse victim

Ansari, 43, is due to appear at Sheffield Magistrates Court (pictured) on Thursday, October 11
Ansari, 43, is due to appear at Sheffield Magistrates Court (pictured) on Thursday, October 11

The Head of News at the BBC Asian Network is set to appear at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court next month, charged under the Sexual Offences (Amendment) Act over a live news bulletin which allegedly named a victim of the Rotherham child sexual exploitation scandal. 

The charges have been brought by the National Crime Agency against Arif Ansari, Head of News at the BBC Asian Network. 

Ansari, 43, is due to appear at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, October 11. 

It is alleged that a victim of child sexual exploitation was named during a live broadcast in February, when the station was reporting on an active Rotherham grooming trial. 

Under English law, victims of sex offences are entitled to lifelong anonymity as soon as an allegation has been made. 

Victims can choose to waive their right to anonymity, but they have to sign a legal document known as a affidavit in order to do so. 

The National Crime Agency is investigating non-familial child sexual exploitation (CSE) carried out in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013, as part of Operation Stovewood – the largest ever investigation into non-recent CSE undertaken by law enforcement.