Man admits kidnapping and raping 81-year-old woman after she got off bus in Balham

Paul Wright
andrew roberts

A man has admitted raping an 81-year-old woman following a vicious attack lasting an hour-and-a-half in Balham, south London.

Anthony Roberts, 41, of Holmbury Court, Tooting, pleaded guilty to kidnap and two counts of rape when he appeared at Kingston Crown Court on Friday (10 March).

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The court heard how Roberts targeted his elderly victim on Friday, 10 February, by sitting next to her on the 155 bus and following her when she got off in Balham High Road at around 8.30pm.

He approached the pensioner from behind and threatened her with a knife, saying he would kill her if she made any noise.

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He then took her to a secluded spot where he raped her. He took off most of her clothing before letting her go, police said.

The victim returned home where she told a family member that she had been attacked. The incident was reported to police and the victim received hospital treatment for injuries suffered.

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An earlier hearing saw the court told the attack lasted in total 96 minutes.

Officers attended Roberts' address the following day and he was arrested, with clothes matching those worn by the attacker seized by police.

Detective Inspector Melissa Laremore, of the Met Police, said: "Roberts is a very dangerous offender who subjected the elderly victim to a vicious rape. Women and the wider public are safer now that he is in custody and awaiting what is likely to be a lengthy prison sentence.

"I would like to pay tribute to the victim who has been extremely brave in assisting officers and providing descriptions of her attacker and the ordeal she went through, which helped us identify Roberts so soon after the attack. The trauma will undoubtedly stay with her, but I hope that she takes some comfort now that her attacker is off the streets.

"Attacks of this horrific nature are extremely rare but when they do happen, we are committed to catching the perpetrator and bringing them to justice."

Roberts will be sentenced on 28 April at the same court.

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