Supermarket rapist faces jail term

A BRUTAL rapist is facing a lengthy jail term after admitting kidnapping a 21-year-old woman in a supermarket car park before driving her to an isolated spot and subjecting her to a prolonged sex ordeal.

Dave Gooderham

A BRUTAL rapist is facing a lengthy jail term after admitting kidnapping a 21-year-old woman in a supermarket car park before driving her to an isolated spot and subjecting her to a prolonged sex ordeal.

Disabled Robert English duped his victim into helping him by pretending to be struggling with heavy bags outside the Tesco store in Brandon - and then bundled her into the boot of his 4x4 at knifepoint.

English appeared at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday and admitted abducting the woman from the car park in London Road in June and raping her at a country hideaway after a 20-minute drive.


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The victim's three-hour ordeal only ended when she was dumped by her attacker in a Brandon industrial estate.

She was able to give a description to police of her attacker and where she was taken, which helped officers catch the offender.

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English, 58, of Fiddlewood Road, Norwich, admitted charges of kidnapping the woman, false imprisonment, sexual assault, assault by penetration and two counts of rape.

The court heard that English, who needed metal crutches to walk, wanted to be sentenced immediately but Judge Neil McKittrick adjourned the case so the victim had the opportunity to be present.

After hearing from Ian James, mitigating for English, Judge McKittrick said: “I need an assessment of the danger posed by your client.

“He will get certain credit for those pleas but I need to know the danger to the public and other women.”

Community leaders said the horrific sex attack had left women in the town in a state of fear and shock.

Eddie Stewart, Forest Heath District Council member and the council's champion for community safety, said people in the town had been gripped by fear of in the days following the rape.

He said: “Brandon, like the whole of Suffolk, is a safe area but incidents like this destroy people's confidence.

“There were a lot of women in the town who were afraid. People thought the way the girl was abducted and then dumped meant it had been someone with local knowledge and that it could happen again. This was such a terrible crime and a lot of people will be relieved.”

Mr Stewart also praised the professionalism of the police who dealt with the case - the first big case for Suffolk police's major investigation team.

Det Ch Insp David Cutler, senior investigating officer in the case, said: “This was a horrific and audacious attack.

“It was a complex case involving both local and specially trained officers who provided support to both the victim and the community, and carried out many hundreds of hours of work to bring this man to justice.

“I would like to thank the media and public for their assistance in this case, many hundreds of people were spoken to and their input was vital in tracking down the offender and the location where he carried out this appalling crime.”

English, who was told to sign the sex offenders' register, was remanded in custody until October 3 when he will be sentenced.

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