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Brighton beach sex attacks
Young seaside revellers were sexually assaulted while swimming in the sea at the weekend.
Police are appealing for witnesses after two separate incidents of sexual assault by touching, involving an 11- year-old girl and a 16-year-old female Swedish student, on Brighton beach on Sunday.
The 16-year-old Swedish student was swimming with friends in the sea opposite the Metropole Hotel when they were approached by five men of Asian appearance at about 2.30pm.
As the friends tried to move away from the men, who were said to be hassling them, one of the suspects grabbed the student and touched her.
Around half an hour later at 3pm, an 11-year-old girl and her friend were also in the water close to the West Pier when they were approached by an Asian man.
The man picked the victim up and threw her in the air before grabbing and touching her.
She swam away and sought help from another beach user and a lifeguard who then alerted the police.
Officers searched the beach for the man but could not find him.
The suspect is described as Asian, with dark brown eyes and short black hair. He was wearing white pants.
Detective Sergeant Emily Hoare, of Sussex Police, called for witnesses on the packed beach to come forward.
She said: “These two incidents happened near to each other and about half an hour apart.
"The two victims suffered a frightening ordeal and there must be witnesses as the beach and sea were packed with people as it was a hot sunny afternoon."
Sunday was the hottest day of the year so far in the UK, with the mercury reaching highs of up to 30 degrees Celsius in parts of the country.
Tens of thousands of people flocked to Brighton beach in search of a cool refuge from the sweltering heatwave, which is set to continue until the end of the week.
Anyone who has information on the incidents should contact Sussex police on 101 quoting serial 1191 of 7/7.
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