(Yahoo) Former home secretary Jack Straw has been criticized for claiming there is a problem with young Pakistani men grooming and sexually abusing vulnerable white girls.Skip related content
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The Blackburn MP talked of a "specific problem" involving Pakistani men who were "fizzing and popping with testosterone".
He added that a minority of these young men considered vulnerable white girls as "easy meat".
His comments have been attacked by fellow Labour colleague Keith Vaz - who said it was wrong to "stereotype a whole community".
Mr Straw spoke after two Asian men who subjected a series of vulnerable girls to rapes and sexual assaults were given indefinite jail terms.
Abid Mohammed Saddique, 27, was jailed for a minimum of 11 years at Nottingham Crown Court (NCC). Mohammed Romaan Liaqat, 28, must serve at least eight years before being considered for release.
The pair led a group of men who befriended girls aged from 12 to 18 in the Derby area and groomed them for sex.
The judge said he did not believe Saddique and Liaqat's crimes were "racially aggravated".
But Mr Straw told Sky News: "There is an undeniable problem with a small minority of Pakistani-heritage men targeting vulnerable white girls.
"These white girls almost exclusively come from chaotic families, some are in care. Otherwise they would not be out on the streets, aged 12, 13, 14."
Mr Straw said he believed the young men were targeting white girls because Pakistani-heritage girls were "off limits".
He told Sky's Colin Brazier that the abusers often did less well at school than their white andIndian peers and drifted into crime.
But he added that it was important to acknowledge that sex offenders in general in the UK were "disproportianately white".
Mr Straw spoke to Sky after telling BBC Newsnight that Pakistani men were "fizzing and popping with testosterone, they want some outlet for that, but Pakistani-heritage girls are off limits and they are expected to marry a Pakistani girl from Pakistan, typically".
He continued: "So they then seek other avenues and they see these young women, white girls who are vulnerable, some of them in care... who they think are easy meat."
Mr Vaz questioned why the ex-home secretary had not spoken out previously.
The Leicester East MP, who chairs the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, said he did not believe there was a "cultural problem".
He told Sky News: "I understand what Jack Straw is saying, but I disagree. I think we should look at this issue primarily as one of criminality.
"I don't think we can make that jump necessarily to it being a cultural problem.
"This is about criminals behaving in a way against young women - they need to be prosecuted and they need to go to jail."
He called for a high-level investigation of such grooming across the UK and said nothing was gained by "lecturing communities about culture".