A man who approached young girls in a Rochdale park before offering them cash in exchange for sex has been jailed.
Shahid Razzaq aged 42 of Hare Street, Rochdale was sentenced to two years and three months yesterday at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court after pleading guilty to one count of attempting sexual assault of a girl aged over 16.
He also pleaded guilty to intentionally attempting to cause or incite a girl under 16 to engage in sexual activity.
He will remain on the sex offenders’ register for the next 10 years and was also handed a sexual harm prevention order that will last for the same amount of time.
The court heard that last August a girl aged 16 was stood outside Touchstones Museum, Rochdale waiting for a friend.
Razzaq stopped in front of her. Asked for a light then offered cigarette, asking where she was going and if she wanted to meet up with him later.
After she declined, he stepped in front of her before making lewd comments and attempting to grab her.She ran off and contacted the police.
The following day the girl recognised Razzaq in footage that a group had posted on Facebook.
The footage taken showed Razzaq being confronted in Broadfield Park by a member of the public.
It emerged that Razzaq had approached a group of young girls, aged 15, 13 and 12 on the park and offered them money for sex.
After being detained by the member of the public, Razzaq was arrested and found to be carrying more than £300.
In interview he denied the offences committed in the park and outside the museum.
Detective Constable David Read of GMP’s Rochdale District said: “Razzaq exhibited a dangerous pattern of offending, which escalated from inappropriate and lewd advances towards a lone, young woman, to attempts at engaging in sexual activity with minors.
“I have little doubt that he set out that evening in the hope of finding a victim.
“His behaviour was disgraceful – the actions of an arrogant man who showed utter contempt for the girls he approached, who were simply minding their own business.
“We can be thankful for the intervention of the member of public, whose quick thinking and bravery in challenging the offender has helped bring this dangerous individual to justice.
“We’re pleased with today’s sentence and hope the girls involved can get on with their lives knowing that this man is off the streets.”