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Schools warned of child abuse in Devon

Devon and Cornwall Police have written to thousands of parents of children at secondary schools in Torbay and Teignbridge in Devon to inform them of a major investigation into child exploitation and abuse.

"We're not dealing with individuals grabbing children off the street" - Detective Inspector Simon Snell

The force says 20 children aged 12 and above had been spoken to in connection with the investigation so far. A 19-year-old man has been arrested.

Officers said the offences include indecent assault and rape over two to three years and that the victims are known to the offenders. Despite warning schools in the area, officers are urging parents to stay calm.

Detective Inspector Simon Snell from Devon and Cornwall Police said: "Just to reassure parents, we're not dealing with individuals grabbing children off the street. Each of the children are known to the offenders and it's simply not the case that it's a group of paedophiles grabbing people off the street."

The arrested man is being held for questioning at a police station in Torquay.

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