Man is found guilty of rape and kidnap in Canning Town and Forest Gate

A man has been convicted of a string of rape offences committed in Newham and Essex.

Sunny Islam, 23, from Barking, appeared at Woolwich Crown Court where he was found guilty of seven counts of rape, one of assault by penetration and another of kidnapping.

The charges relate to four female victims, aged between 15 and 30 years at the time of the offences, between May and September last year.

It was the attack on a 15-year-old girl in Canning Town that sparked the police investigation.

She had been walking along Gerald Road, with her friend at around 3.25am when Islam grabbed her at knifepoint and drove her to a secluded road in Barking. He threatened her before raping her in his Renault Clio.

She eventually managed to break free and immediately alerted police. DNA taken from her led police to identify a further victim from east London.

She was a sex worker in east London and had been picked up by Islam. Once inside his car Islam repeatedly punched her before raping her. Although she didn’t initially report the offence she did actively assist the investigation once contacted by officers.

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Officers searched files for similar incidents already being investigated in the surrounding area.

The court heard how a third victim had been walking alone along Eleanor Road, Forest Gate on July 14, 2010.

Islam got out of his car and grabbed her pulling her back into the vehicle.

He raped her before she managed to smash through a window of the car and escape.

Another sex worker from east London, had been approached by Islam. She agreed to get be driven to a location nearby where Islam quickly turned violent and forced her into the back of the vehicle.

He bound her hands together with plastic quick-cuffs and raped her. She was forced from his vehicle. She immediately reported the attack to police.

Det Chief Insp John Sandlin, of the Homicide and Serious Crime Command (HSCC) who investigated the offences, said: “These were a series of terrifying assaults carried out by a man who actively preyed on vulnerable women. He would deliberately patrol the streets of east London and Essex under the cover of darkness to approach known sex workers or threaten lone females walking home. Once inside his vehicle he would use violence to control his victims and we believe that had he continued to offend he would have taken the violent outbursts to a more sinister level.

“In his final attack he snatched a girl from the street at knifepoint and threatened to kill her unless she agreed to carry out his depraved sexual demands. I would like to express my thanks to all of the victims involved in this case. They came forward to give evidence, showing a huge amount of courage throughout this investigation, and we only hope that this result brings them some small comfort.

“Despite this result we believe there may be more victims who, for whatever reason, are yet to come forward and speak to police. Should any further information come to light it will be dealt with robustly. Please contact your local police where a specially trained officer will be assigned to you.”

Paying tribute to the victims for testifying, CPS London District Crown Prosecutor for Snaresbrook, Lionel Idan, said: “These were terrifying and frenzied sexual attacks on vulnerable victims.”

He added: “Today this man has been brought to justice for his crimes and I hope this successful prosecution means his victims are able to move on with their lives.”

Islam is due to be sentenced at Woolwich Crown Court on October 7. He is in custody.