A VULNERABLE girl left a Bradford children’s home at midnight to meet her older boyfriend waiting outside in his car, a jury heard on Friday.

The “secretive” child would tell staff she was slipping out for a cigarette before driving off with a man she called Bash and returning in the early hours of the morning.

The first witnesses in the trial of ten men accused of preying on the girl, and another child who was resident at the local authority care home, told Bradford Crown Court she was “cagey” and “guarded” when asked about her older boyfriend.

She revealed to a specialist children’s nurse that she was in a sexual relationship with a man aged 22 who did not put her under pressure.

A support worker at the home in 2009 said the teenager stayed out until 5.25am on one occasion, and after 3am on another.

The woman told the jury she herself spoke to 'Bash' and told him it was inappropriate to arrive at midnight to see the girl.

Another former staff member said the child was “a bit of a loner”. She spent the evenings in her room, putting on make-up ready to meet Bash.

She was encouraged to “open up” about the relationship but she was a private person, although she did talk at one time about marrying him.

After she had moved out of the home, the girl told a staff member Bash had had a go at her, saying people would see her walking around the area and know where she lived.

“I said it sounded like Bash wanted her on lockdown,” the witness said, adding that she was concerned about the situation.

“It was clear that she felt so much for this person, 'Bash', that she did not say anything,” the witness added.

A night worker at the home in 2008 said the staff could not prevent the girls from going out late at night.

She saw the girl leaving to meet her boyfriend waiting in his car.

“She would never say how old he was, so I assumed he was too old,” she said.

The girl would smile and stare down if asked about sexual matters.

“She was coy about the relationship. I thought she was slightly isolated,” the woman said.

She recalled Bash buying the girl GHD hair straighteners and said she always smoked branded cigarettes.

After she had moved out of the home, the girl rang in tears at 3am, saying Bash was in a relationship with another woman.

“I am never going to get over him. Why do I still love him?” she asked.

The witness said she never saw the girl intoxicated or having taken drugs. She would say she was meeting Bash to pick up a pizza.

Prosecutor, Kama Melly QC, alleges that the two girls were used for the “sexual fulfilment” of the men on trial.

She told the jury the abuse began ten years ago when the girls were 14.

Basharat Khaliq, 38, of Bradford, denies five counts of rape and one count of assault by penetration.

Saeed Akhtar, 55, of Bradford, denies two counts of causing/inciting child prostitution and one of rape.

Yasar Majid, 37, of Milton Keynes, denies one count of rape.

Naveed Akhtar, 43, of Bradford, denies three counts of rape.

Parvaze Ahmed, 36, of Bradford, denies three counts of rape.

Izar Hussain, 32, of Bradford, denies three counts of rape and one of attempted rape.

Zeeshan Ali, 32, of Bradford, denies a charge of sexual assault.

Kieran Harris, 28, of Dewsbury, denies two counts of rape.

Fahim Iqbal, 27, of no fixed abode, denies a charge of aiding and abetting rape and Mohammed Usman, 31, of Bradford, denies two charges of rape.

The trial continues.