A takeaway boss in Carlisle has been convicted of attempting to recruit four girls aged 12 to 16 into prostitution.

Azad Miah, 44, hounded and stalked the girls to have sex for money while at the same time running a brothel from his city centre premises in Carlisle.

The married father-of-four was also found guilty of paying for the sexual services of two teenage girls.

His trial at Carlisle Crown Court heard that one of his victims complained to police about him persistently harassing her in 2008, three years before his arrest.

During that time he continued his pattern of behaviour in what the prosecution described as a “cold, clinical exploitation of the desperate and vulnerable”.

His mode of operation was to target girls and women who he thought would rather have sex for money than risk jail by stealing to feed addictions to drugs or drink.

The Bangladeshi former owner of the Spice of India restaurant was found guilty of inciting four girls into child prostitution between 2007 and 2011.

He was cleared of the same allegation against two other girls.

Miah was also convicted by the jury of paying for the sexual services of two girls between 2006 and 2009, and one count of keeping a brothel between 2005 and 2011.

Sentencing will take place on Tuesday from 11am.