A SERVING Cheshire Police officer has been charged following a police investigation into the alleged rape of a 13-year-old girl.

Ian Naude, 29, of Shropshire Street, in Market Drayton, Shropshire, has been charged with rape.

He appeared at South Cheshire Magistrates Court on Monday, November 6, where he was remanded into custody to appear before Chester Crown Court on Monday, December 4.

The rape charge relates to an incident reported to officers on Friday, November 3 in Crewe. The victim is a 13-year-old girl who is receiving specialist care and support.

A spokesman at Cheshire Police said: "As soon as concerns were raised officers took immediate action to investigate the allegation and an arrest was made on Saturday, November 4.

"Naude was served a suspension notice after being charged on Sunday, November 5.

"As a matter of course Cheshire Constabulary has referred the matter to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

"Cheshire Police takes all allegations of rape extremely seriously and has specialist trained officers available to provide support."

Anyone who has been a victim of this type of crime is urged to contact police.