Samantha Owens, now 24, from Chesterfield, was forced to have sex with over 40 men by evil Amanda Spencer during the years that followed
A traumatised mum has told how her “best mate” pimped her out to be raped by five strangers at the age of 13 – and then passed her around a sex ring for cash.
Samantha Owens, now 24, from Chesterfield, was forced to have sex with over 40 men by evil Amanda Spencer, who pocketed the money to fund her addictions.
Samantha’s life spiralled out of control and in February 2012 she was arrested for stealing and held in a youth-detention centre.
It was there that Samantha, who has waived her right to anonymity, finally opened up about her horrific ordeal.
Two years later Spencer, now 26, was caged for 12 years, having been found guilty of 14 counts of arranging or facilitating child prostitution, and two counts of causing or inciting child prostitution.
Knowing she was not alone, Samantha made it her mission to get justice for Spencer’s other victims and encouraged them to speak out.
In April this year, Spencer received an additional sentence of three years for four counts of arranging or facilitating child prostitution between 2005 and 2012.
Since then, four men have also been jailed for their roles in the sex ring.
Brave Samantha said: “I’m moving on and I want to forget about Amanda Spencer.
“To think I thought she was my best friend! She’s scum and not worth another second of my thoughts.”
Like Spencer, Samantha grew up in foster care. The pair met while hanging around Sheffield’s Castle Market.
“Amanda had asked if I wanted to try shoplifting,” Samantha explained.
“She seemed so much older and cooler than me, and silly as it sounds, I really wanted her to like me, so I stole a few bits from a sweet shop.”
After that, the two of them were thick as thieves.
Spencer would treat Samantha to new trainers, takeaways, booze and even gave her legal highs.
“She always seemed to have a lot of cash on her,” Samantha admitted.
“I loved the fact I was doing such grown-up things. One day Amanda asked if I wanted to earn my own cash.
“She said I could have money like her, if I helped her out.”
Spencer told Samantha, who was a virgin, that she needed to have sex with “a few men”.
Before she had time to think, Spencer took her to a house nearby where a group of four or five men were waiting.
The walls were plastered with pictures of naked women. Samantha recalled how Spencer told her she’d be back later.
She said: “My legs were like jelly, I was shaking with fright. I felt sick, knowing what these men expected of me.
“I sobbed to Amanda that I didn’t want to do it, but she shook me off and left the house.”
Samantha recalled how a man led her to a room and started taking off her clothes.
“My heart was hammering in my chest, tears streaming down my cheeks as he raped me,” she said.
“The pain was unbearable, but it was just the start. I was raped twice more before Amanda collected me the next morning.
“After that I felt completely lost and broken.”
Not wanting to disappoint her best friend, Samantha continued to do as Amanda asked.
She was regularly dropped off at different houses and over the next few years, Samantha was passed around a sex ring, forced to have sex with over 40 men.
Her life gradually went off the rails.
Samantha fell pregnant by a boyfriend, from whom she split soon afterwards.
After being arrested for thieving, Samantha confided in a young girl at the youth-detention centre about her harrowing experiences.
“It was in that moment that I realised Amanda was no friend of mine,” she said.
“I was just a kid, and what she did was sick, twisted and wrong.
“Eventually I opened up to a youth worker and then the police.”
Samantha was released without charge 32 days later and police began investigating Spencer.
In September 2012, Samantha gave birth to her son.
“I knew I had to stay strong for him,” she said.
In May 2014, Spencer, then 23, appeared at Sheffield Crown Court and pleaded not guilty to 16 counts relating to child prostitution against Samantha and three other victims.
The court heard she was 16 when she began befriending victims as young as 13 and used the money she earned from them to fund her alcohol and drug addictions.
After Spencer was found guilty, Samantha returned to Sheffield – having moved away – and spoke to young girls in the area whom she believed may too have fallen victim to predatory Spencer.
“Some of them knew Amanda and confided in me about what she’d made them do,” she said.
“I urged them to go to the police. Some of them must have taken my advice.”
In April, brothers Christopher, 23, Matthew, 25, and Shane Whiteley, 30, all of Hackenthorpe, were found guilty of multiple sexual offences including rape, sexual assault against a child under 13 and conspiracy to arrange child prostitution and theft.
Appearing alongside them were Spencer and Taleb Bapir, 39, who were respectively found guilty of four counts of arranging child prostitution and rape.
During the six-week trial, Whiteley and Spencer were identified as the main players in the child prostitution ring.
The group was jailed for a combined total of 43 years.
Peter Mann, from the CPS, said: “These defendants cynically targeted and sexually exploited young and vulnerable girls. The suffering the victims must have endured is hard to comprehend.”
Now Samantha is finally learning to trust people again.
“It’s not easy,” she said. “I hope Amanda can live with herself for destroying so many innocent lives.”
In September we told how members of a child sex grooming network who abused girls as young as 14 in Newcastle are behind bars following a huge investigation by Northumbria Police.