Joseph McCann guilty: Serial rapist convicted of string of sex attacks after cocaine-fuelled rampage

Joseph McCann convicted (PA)

Joseph McCann has been convicted by an Old Bailey jury of a string of rapes after he went on a cocaine and vodka-fuelled rampage.

McCann was found guilty of all 37 counts relating to 11 women and children, including rape, kidnap and false imprisonment, by a jury on Friday.

It took the jury foreman seven-and-a-half minutes to deliver verdicts on all counts.

Screengrab taken from CCTV issued by the Metropolitan Police of Joseph McCann (bottom right) using a drive-thru at McDonalds on April 25, whilst his alleged victim was in his car (PA/MET POLICE)

Mr Justice Edis told the court that 33 of the offences carried discretionary life sentences, which he was considering in the case.

Over three separate days, McCann abducted, raped and held a string of victims aged 11 to 71 prisoner across London, Hertfordshire and the North West.

McCann, a convicted burglar who had been freed after a probation error, snatched his first victim at knifepoint after she left Pryzm nightclub in Watford, Hertfordshire on April 21.

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The 21-year-old was forced into a Ford Mondeo in the early hours, taken home and raped in her own bed.

Just after midnight on April 25, McCann then struck in Walthamstow, east London, kidnapping a 25-year-old woman as she walked home from work.

Hours later, he was caught on CCTV bundling another young woman into his car in north London, as her sister ran off screaming.

The serial rapist was caught with two 14-year-old girls in the back of a car and attempted to hide to avoid being arrested.

A police helicopter finally located him up a tree, he was coaxed down and arrested early on May 6.

After he was arrested, McCann is said to have told a police officer: "If you had caught me for the first two, the rest of this wouldn't have happened.”

Undated handout photo issued by the Metropolitan Police of Joseph McCann (PA/MET POLICE)

In a statement after verdicts were announced, Detective Chief Inspector Katherine Goodwin, who led the investigation, said: “From the moment of his first offence, McCann did everything he could not to be caught and had changed his appearance, given false names and used different cars in order to evade the law.

“Added to that, he had been assisted by a number of people who knew where he was – and that police were looking for him – who decided to help him remain at large and free to attack again.

“Despite these extensive efforts, the work of our dedicated officers and their unwavering commitment to getting justice for each and every victim in this case means he will never again be able to inflict this kind of pain and distress.”

Screengrab taken from CCTV issued by the Metropolitan Police of McCann being pursued by police just before being arrested (PA)

The Ministry of Justice has also launched an inquiry into why McCann was not recalled to prison after committing a burglary following his release from an indeterminate sentence for aggravated burglary.

McCann was automatically freed having served half of his sentence on February 15.

Sentencing has been adjourned until Monday, with Justice Ede saying McCann could attend in court or by video link from prison.