A man who beat and raped a woman in her mid 20s in Victoria Park hours before he was due to get married has been sentenced to life imprisonment.

Derry McCann, 28, attacked his victim at around 11pm on Thursday, January 12, as she walked home near Grove Road after an evening out with friends.

As the woman attempted to pass McCann on the pathway, he grabbed her and pulled her toward some benches.

The court heard that he told his victim to be quiet, made it clear he would hurt her if she resisted and hit her in the face when she tried to reason with him.

She was then subjected to a drawn out attack where she was raped, beaten and humiliated.

When it was over, McCann took photographs of her and said she was lucky that he had not filmed it, before stealing her phone and leaving.

Hours later he went on to get married.

McCann, of St Peter’s Way, Hackney, refused to answer questions when he was arrested on Wednesday, January 18, but was picked out by the victim at an identity parade.

Police believe he had been following another woman immediately before the rape, but had lost her and so stalked his eventual victim.

McCann admitted to three counts of rape and one count of robbery at Snaresbrook Crown Court on March 3.

He was sentenced at the same court to life imprisonment with a minimum term of nine years on Friday, April 28.

Det Sgt Stephen Porter from the Met’s Sexual Offences, Exploitation and Child Abuse Command said: “This was a truly dreadful crime.

“McCann put his victim through a horrendous ordeal and her courage and bravery have been a stark contrast to McCann’s cowardly and vicious attack.

“Thankfully her courage meant that the offender was swiftly arrested and brought to justice.

“I hope this will reassure those who suffer sexual violence that they will be supported and their crimes rigorously investigated.
“As for McCann, the long sentence imposed today is completely deserved.

“I am sure he set out that night to carry out a sexual assault. The public needs to be protected from such predators.”

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