Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation - CSAE

Child sexual abuse and exploitation (CSAE) is a form of sexual abuse. It occurs when an individual or group takes advantage of an imbalance of power to coerce, manipulate or deceive a child or young person under the age of 18 into sexual activity (a) in exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and/or (b) for the financial advantage or increased status of the perpetrator or facilitator. The victim may have been sexually exploited even if the sexual activity appears consensual. Child sexual abuse and exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology. Often, victims are not aware they are being exploited and so cannot protect themselves. 

Signs that a young person is being sexually exploited

Young people with the following characteristics are likely to be at high risk of sexual exploitation:

  • Going missing for periods of time or regularly returning home late.

  • Regularly missing school or not taking part in education.

  • Appearing with unexplained gifts or possessions.

  • Associating with other young people involved in exploitation.

  • Having older boyfriends or girlfriends.

  • Suffering from sexually transmitted infections.

  • Uncharacteristic and significant mood swings or changes in emotional well being.

  • Drug and alcohol misuse.

  • Displaying inappropriate sexualised behaviour.

  • Use of mobile phone and internet that causes concern.

  • Involved with or linked to gang activity.

Remember Safeguarding Children is everyone's responsibility!
If you suspect that a child is at risk or experiencing child sexual exploitation call the police on 101 or 999 in an emergency or The Referral and Assessment Centre on 024 7678 8555 or out of hours 024 7683 2222.
are being exploited and so cannot protect themselves

See Me Hear Me

'The warning signs were there' a new animation follows the story of a young girl who is being groomed and shows how those around her, her teacher, her friend and her dad notice changes in her behaviour. It then turns to the abuser who describes how he grooms her with gifts, alcohol and affection before abusing her, adding 'the warning signs were there'.

There are a number of things to look out if you believe somebody maybe groomed, click here for more information on what to look out for and signs of possible child exploitation.


A powerful clip above features the abuser has been released via social media targeting both parents and young people in the region. For more information on case studies, please click here

Below are links to websites and documents in regards to Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE).
CSE Myths V’s Reality: external links/ information

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