John Worboys: Black cab rapist faces life in prison after admitting drugging four more women

Call for review of outstanding allegations after police say he may have attacked more than 100 women

Lizzie Dearden
Home Affairs Correspondent
Thursday 20 June 2019 10:51
John Worboys admits to four additional sex attacks

Rapist John Worboys faces life in prison after admitting attacks on four more women he picked up in his black cab.

The 62-year-old, who now goes by the name John Radford, was jailed in definitely in 2009 but judged fit for release from prison last year.

The decision was later quashed following a legal challenge, but amid public outrage over his planned release four more victims came forward to police.

Worboys pleaded guilty to two counts of administering a stupefying or overpowering drug with intent to commit rape or indecent assault.

Appearing at the Old Bailey via video-link from prison, he admitted two further charges of administering a substance with intent to commit a sexual offence.

Justice McGowan said Worboys could face life in prison when she sentences him in October.

Ordering a report on his crimes and danger to the public, she said: “This is a case on which the public interest is better represented by the Probation Service putting forward a complete history.”

Justice McGowan ordered Worboys to be brought to court for the next hearing, saying: “This is a case where the public might expect the defendant to be sitting in the dock.”

In 2009, he was jailed indefinitely for public protection with a minimum of eight years for sex attacks on 12 women.

Police suspected him of attacking more than 100 women but several investigations were dropped with no further action on advice from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

A lawyer representing some of Worboys’s victims called a review of all allegations that were taken to police but “dismissed”.

Richard Scorer, of Slater and Gordon, said: “Worboys’ guilty plea will hopefully bring some relief to these victims in that it has spared them the further ordeal of a trial.

“I only wish the same could be said for the dozens of other women who found the courage to report very serious allegations, only for these to be dismissed.

“It is appalling that it was left to victims to fight tooth and nail to bring Worboys to justice in the first place.

“In light of today’s plea, I would again urge that every allegation against him should now be reviewed again. It is the very least his victims deserve.”

Former Parole Board chairman Nick Hardwick says David Gauke should accept responsibility for John Worboys case

At his first trial at Croydon Crown Court, jurors were told that Worboys picked up his victims in London’s West End and plied them with champagne laced with sedatives on the pretext of celebrating a lottery or casino win.

In the latest case, prosecutor Jonathan Polnay described similar attacks on four more women.

The first victim told how Worboys told her he had won money on horse races and used to be a male stripper after she got into his cab in London.

“He offered champagne and invited her to celebrate,” Mr Polnay said.

“This defendant pulled over on a side road off the A40 served an alcoholic drink in a plastic cup, which she drank. That is her last memory that evening.

“She woke up the next day, naked, with her clothes left in a trail on the way to her bed.”

The black cab John Worboys used to pick up victims

The victim recognised Worboys after seeing publicity about his case in 2009 and in December 2018 picked him out in an identity parade.

The second victim was a university student, who was targeted after leaving a nightclub in Oxford Street.

All the women made their allegations to police in early 2018 after media reports of his imminent release, but the offences dated back to between 2000 and 2008 in London.

Worboys’s victims launched a successful legal challenge and the Parole Board later ruled that he should remain in prison, citing his “sense of sexual entitlement” and a need to control women.

Gregor McGill, the CPS director of legal services, called Worboys a “sexual predator”.

“His modus operandi will be familiar to any victim unfortunate enough to cross his path: entice them into his cab with cheap fares, offer them a sedative-laced drink and take advantage of their vulnerable state,” he added.

“Worboys has left countless victims feeling traumatised, anxious and violated. I’d like to pay tribute to their bravery in continuing to speak up.”

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One of the victims who brought the legal challenge against his release described her shock at the guilty plea, following a decade of denials.

The woman, identified in the proceedings as DSD, added: “Whilst I can’t help being cynical about his motives and I am pleased that his victims have been saved the trauma of a court case. My thoughts are with each and every victim today and the hope that we can now put this behind us and finally rebuild our lives.

“I would also like to express my utmost admiration of the victims’ courage to finally speak out to ensure this dangerous criminal is brought to justice.”

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