On BBC three's Free Speech, Does ‘rape culture’ exist in the UK?, James Delingpole, Executive Editor Breitbart London made a claim (4:10 mark) that was followed by boos from the audience and a charge of spreading lies from fellow panelist Nelufar Hedayat:

[James Delingpole]: One of the points you made, you referred I think to the grooming gangs in Rochdale and in Rotherham, and it's not just in the north it's in Telford, in Norfolk it has happened. We have got these organized gangs, mostly of Muslim origin. I think we just need, [...] . It's a fact!

[Nelufar Hedayat]: It is also a fact that a majority ...

[James Delingpole] Can you let me finish, thank you very much.

[Nelufar Hedayat]: It's outrageous. You're spreading lies.

[James Delingpole]: You outrageously interrupt me. I am not spreading lies. Why dont you read ...,

[Nelufar Hedayat]: How could you possibly do that. I am just telling you what the member of that audience... they are screaming at you.

[James Delingpole]: why don't ...., why don't you read the newspapers. If you look at the names that have come up in the court cases you will find that most of them are of Kashmiri/Pakistani origin.

[Host]: Nullify.

[James Delingpole]: You talk about rape culture. It's a very pretty state of affairs when the police and the social workers would not deal with this problem, because they were too embarrassed about being called racist.

  • 1
    @DikranMarsupial, good thing "Rochdale rape gang," "Rotherham rape gang,", and "Telford rape gang," do provide evidence though. Don't make sweeping generalizations based on inadequate research though.
    – user1873
    Commented Nov 29, 2014 at 15:20
  • @user1873, that is not an example of the kind of activity the question was referring to. That's a group of pedophiles operating over several years. Not a roving gang on the streets.
    – barbecue
    Commented Nov 29, 2014 at 16:29
  • 1
    Are you asking "gangs" or "rape gangs"? If the latter, I think this question makes too many assumptions. Before addressing this question, we should verify: Do organised rape gangs exist?. The only mention of sexual violence on the Wikipedia article on gangs (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gang#Sexual_violence) is about female members within gangs being at risk for sexual violence.
    – gerrit
    Commented Dec 1, 2014 at 21:22

2 Answers 2


CEOPS (Child Exploitation and Online Protection centre) issued a report that deals in part with the UK "grooming gangs". With regard to the ethnic make-up of these gangs, they say

Ethnicity descriptors remain imprecise and as not all police forces responded to CEOP’s information request, the data is incomplete. Using broad groupings, all ethnicities were represented in the sample, however, a disproportionate number of offenders were reported as Asian. Of the 52 groups for which usable ethnicity data was provided, 26 (50%) comprised all Asian offenders, 11 (21%) all white offenders, 9 (17%) groups comprised offenders from multiple ethnicities, 4 (8%) comprised all black offenders and there were 2 (4%) groups of exclusively Arab offenders. Of the 306 offenders whose ethnicity was provided for type 1 offending, a total of 75% were categorised as Asian, 17% were categorised as white, and the remaining 8% were categorised as black (5%) or Arab (3%). This is in contrast to those identified in type 2 group offending, who were reported as exclusively of white ethnicity. From Threat Assessment of Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (p.18)

  • By Asian, do you mean east or south?
    – user716881
    Commented Apr 2, 2021 at 19:09

Based on the UK Ministry of Justice data, enter image description here

the ethnic origin of rapists in prison for rape and other sex offences is overwhelmingly white. Therefore, the question, as phrased, has the clear answer of NO.

Additionally, to address the point that Pakistanis are more likely to be rapists than the average Briton, the demographics of the UK show that Pakistanis make up ~2% of the population in 2011, and they are grouped with Chinese under Asian or Asian British (7%). 559 out of 9850 sex offenders in 2011 were Asian British or Chinese, therefore we can say that Asian British, the group which contains Pakistanis, was actually under-represented in the population of sex offenders.

  • 7
    The difference between these numbers compared with Mrs Grimble's answer is presumably that the other reference focuses on a) gangs b) who target teenagers or children.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Dec 14, 2014 at 10:26
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    @ChrisW, indeed. James Delingpole even concedes this point to Nelufar Hedayat, noting that in any country the majority race/ethnicity will likely be the one with the most criminals (I.e. most criminals in Japan are Japanese, Germany's criminals are mostly German, etc.) He does point out that Pakistani/Kashmir are disproportionately criminals in the UK. It is important to look at the proportion of criminals to their proportion in society.
    – user1873
    Commented Dec 14, 2014 at 15:21
  • 2
    @user1873 Answer was updated to take into account the fact that Pakistanis are NOT disproportionately likely to be rapists, and the converse is true.
    – March Ho
    Commented Dec 14, 2014 at 16:51
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    Downvoters, it would be great if you would explain what you find incorrect with the answer.
    – March Ho
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 8:16
  • 1
    My comment was up-voted, perhaps by the same people who down-voted the answer. Maybe they down-voted because the question asks about "organized rape gangs", and the notable claim is about "the grooming gangs" and "these organized gangs". I up-voted the answer FWIW.
    – ChrisW
    Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 14:53

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