Unknown man jailed for attempted rape in Holloway

The man - whose identity remains unknown - has been convicted of attempted rape and sexual assault

The man - whose identity remains unknown - has been convicted of attempted rape and sexual assault - Credit: Archant

An unidentified man who attempted to rape a woman in Holloway has been jailed for six years.

Detectives said it was a “highly unusual” case as his identity remains unknown - after he gave false details - and the victim was never traced.

At Blackfriars Crown Court today, the man, believed to be a French national, was found guilty of attempted rape. He had previously pleaded guilty to sexual assault. The court ordered that he should be deported after completing his sentence.

On Sunday, March 1 at around 2am, two members of the public noticed a man struggling with a woman on the ground outside a block of communal garages at Caledonian Road, near Sturmer Way.

The man was partially undressed and was attempting to remove the woman’s clothing. The witnesses shouted at the man, who ran off. He was chased and caught a short distance away.

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One of the witnesses checked on the welfare of the woman, who was uninjured, and he then called the police.

However, the victim left the scene before police arrived. Despite numerous public appeals to trace her, she has never been found.

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The attacker was arrested. When asked for his details, he said he was a French national and gave a name. However, detectives carried out fingerprint checks with the French authorities, who confirmed that the name he was using was false - but they too were unable to identify who he really was.

As detectives were unable to identify him, and he refused to provide his correct details, he was tried under the assumed name.

Det Cons Kip Malek, sexual offences exploitation and child abuse command, praised the witnesses: “This is a highly unusual case where we have been unable to trace the victim and the man who has been convicted is under an assumed name. Despite this we have been able to get a conviction and that is due to the brave members of the public who witnessed the attack and took it upon themselves to pursue this man and contact us.

“This incident should demonstrate to people that we take all offences of sexual assault very seriously and when they do occur, we do everything we can to bring the offenders to justice.”

Det Insp Neil Smithson said: “A dangerous individual has been convicted. I am still keen to ascertain his identity - anyone who recognises him should call us on 020 8733 6572 or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

“Equally, if you were the victim of this offence please contact us - we have specially trained officers who can support you.

“I would urge anyone who has been the victim of sexual violence to come forward, safe in the knowledge that they will be listened to, the case will be thoroughly investigated and we will provide bespoke victim care depending on the individual’s needs.”

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