A Muslim worship leader is accused of raping a 12-year-old boy during visits to a mosque for religious lessons.
Mohammed Hanif Khan, 42, is alleged to have sexually assaulted the boy inside the Stoke on Trent mosque where he worked as the imam.
He is also charged with the attempted rape of and sexual activity with the boy's cousin, who was 15 at the time, as he stayed over at his home one evening.
Khan, who appeared in front of Nottingham Crown Court yesterday wearing a black suit, white shirt and red tie, spoke only to confirm his name and to enter not guilty pleas to all eight charges against him.
Mohammed Hanif Khan in the Stoke on Trent mosque where he worked as imam. He is alleged to have sexually assaulted a 12-year-old boy inside the mosque. He denies all the charges against him
Khan, from Sheffield, is charged with three counts of rape, four counts of attempted rape and one count of sexual activity with a child, all of which are alleged to have taken place on various dates between July 1, 2009 and October 16, 2009.
Opening the case, prosecutor Tariq Bin Shakoor told the jury of six men and six women that part of Khan's job as imam of the mosque was to lead prayers and to give Islamic education lessons to boys who attended evening classes at the mosque.
He told the court that in police interviews in October 2009 the 12-year-old boy, who cannot be named, said he was singled out by Khan following the evening prayer on about half a dozen occasions, the first of which was in around August 2009.
'On each occasion it happened at the mosque, usually after the formal prayers in the main prayer hall,' the prosecutor said.
'The defendant would request him to lay out his red prayer mat in a different part of the mosque. That is when the remaining prayer would be completed individually and not in congregation.
'He seems to suggest that usually the defendant would take him through the door marked "private" and into the sitting room area, and into the room with cushions on the floor used by committee members.
'On occasions, then passing through another door in the big room, the classroom, going to the corner at the back.'
The prosecutor said the defendant chose different places within the mosque that were not covered by CCTV cameras, one of which was the area near the building's bins.
'He (the boy) said once it happened by the bins downstairs. That, he recalled, was the first time.
Read more: Muslim leader 'raped young boy as he attended mosque for religious lessons' | Mail Online
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