A criminal investigation is to be started after a damning new report into Rotherham’s child sexual exploitation prompted the replacement of its entire political leadership with Government commissioners.

Communities secretary Eric Pickles announced the measures to replace the council’s “wholly dysfunctional” political leadership just moments after the authority’s entire cabinet announced its intention to resign in the wake of the Louise Casey inspection report.

At the same time, the National Crime Agency (NCA) said its ongoing investigation into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham was to be extended in the light of Miss Casey’s findings.

The NCA said it will ” examine a number of potentially criminal matters identified during a recent inspection of Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council”.