By Sarah Knapton
Britain would need a rolling programme of prison building to house all its paedophiles if they were all to prosecuted, Sue Berelowitz has warned
Child sex abuse is so rife in Britain that there is not enough land in the country to build the number of prisons needed to house the perpetrators, the Deputy Children’s Commissioner for England has warned.
Sue Berelowitz, who is currently chairing the government’s inquiry into the problem said the public would be shocked by the sheer scale of the problem when she reports in November.
She blamed the spread of pornography through the internet and social media for the growing problem of an increasingly sexualised society.
Speaking at the Hay Festival, Mrs Berelowitz said: “We live in a highly sexualised world in which for the most part it is considered quite acceptable to do as they want with females, and too many females think that is something they must comply with because they think it is a part of growing up
“Child porn and the proliferation of indecent images of children, and all the stuff we are seeing on social media which is undoubtedly having an impact on young people growing up and their impressions of sex and sexuality.
“I want us to keep in mind that people who sexually abuse children are somehow another breed. They are here and in our midst.
“There certainly needs to be much more awareness to bring it into the public’s consciousness. The figures when I report in November are going to be very shocking indeed.
“If the CPS were to prosecute everyone we would need a rolling prison programme. I would say there probably isn’t the land to build enough prisons.”
Mrs Berelowitz’s report comes in the wake of abuse scandals in areas including Rotherham, where it was reported that 1,400 children were abused between 1997 and 2013.
A previous inquiry into sex abuse by gangs revealed that from August 2010 to October 2011 at least 2,409 children were sexually exploited by gangs and groups across England.
Scotland Yard is also being investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) over claims that it covered up child sex abuse because of the involvement of influential MPs and police officers between the 1970 and 2000s.
Mrs Berelowitz claimed that there were still cover ups happening in local authorities and police stations but said the bigger issue was in homes.
She described how police had refused to prosecute the father of an 18-month-old baby even though the child had shown clear signs of sexual abuse…