A judge has spoken out over the £25,000 legal bill racked up by a members of a paedophile gang who asked for five different interpreters – all to translate the same language.

Judge Martin Joy said the five men, all refugees from Sudan, had cost British taxpayers a total of £125,000 for the interpreters and individual barristers, all supplied by legal aid.

The judge spoke out after a jury at Maidstone Crown Court found one of the men guilty of rape and all five guilty of sexual activity with a child.

They had attacked two schoolgirls aged 13 in Dartford and Gravesend, Kent last summer.

Judge Joy told them: “It is quite plain you have exploited the most civilised aspect of this country throughout this trial, despite the fact that some of you have been in this country for several years.

“The bill for interpretation alone is a minimum of £25,000. Add to that are some eight pre-trial court management hearings and, no doubt, conferences at the prisons.

“It seems to me you have exploited the hospitality this country has to offer.”

The judge added: “You came to this country to seek political asylum. No doubt you came to this country because you regarded it as a safe country.

However, because of your conduct, this country becomes less safe.”

Juma Saleh, 19, Mohamud Jimale, 20, Dawt Kefle, 18, and Mahder Zeregergis, 19, were convicted of two counts of sexual activity with a child.

Adil Aboulkadir, 33, was found guilty rape and three counts of sexual activity with a child.

The gang now await sentencing and could face deportation once they are released from prison, though Judge Joy said it would be difficult to find a country that would welcome them.

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