Three men charged with abusing girls

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Three men have been charged with sexual offences involving four young girls.

James Ruehle, 66, of Whinfield Lane, Ashton, Preston, has been charged with two counts of rape of a girl under 16, one attempted rape, one offence of sexual assault and one offence of making indecent images.

Kert Birtwistle, 19, of Arundel Place, Avenham, Preston, has been charged with one count of rape of a girl under 16 and one offence of making indecent images.

Both men were arrested at JR Chicago Hot Dogs takeaway on Fishergate, Preston, on Thursday.

A third man, Michael McDougall, 29, of Ashworth Street, Preston, has been charged with one offence of rape of a girl under 16, one offence of making indecent images and two offences of of sexual assault.

A Lancashire police spokesman said the charges relate to an investigation into allegations of sexual abuse by four girls aged between 14 and 17. The offences are alleged to have taken place in August.

All three men were remanded into custody and were due to appear at Preston Magistrates Court on Saturday.