Serial rapist carried out 'sickening campaign of sexual violence against women'

·3-min read
Shaun Collins, also known as Shaun Greenwood
Shaun Collins, also known as Shaun Greenwood

Police are 'convinced there could be more victims' of serial rapist Shaun Collins, following his latest conviction.

Collins, formerly known as Shaun Greenwood, was sentenced to 12 years today for grooming a schoolgirl before going on to sexually abuse her in Burnley in the 1980s.

The 58-year-old is already serving a life sentence after being convicted of three separate rape offences against three different victims in 2006.

Speaking after today's hearing at Burnley Crown Court, DC Kyle Hazelaar, of the East MOSOVO (Management of Sexual or Violent Offender) Team, said: “Collins is a dangerous individual who carried out a sickening campaign of sexual violence against women over many years. I am pleased he has had his time in custody increased.

“Not only did he carry out these appalling crimes for his own perverted sexual motives, he also made the victim re-live her ordeal by having to give evidence.

"She has shown incredible bravery in the case and I want to place on record my admiration for the incredible bravery she has shown throughout this process.

“Collins carried out his abuse over several decades and I am convinced there could be more victims who have not yet come forward.

"I would encourage anyone who has been the victim of a sexual offence to make contact with the police knowing they will be listened to and believed.

"No matter how historic the case may be, we will investigate it and do everything in our power to put the perpetrator before the courts.”

After reading about Collins’ conviction in 2006, a fourth victim wrote a letter to a now retired Lancashire Police Detective Sergeant outlining how her life had been affected by the defendant's sexual offending.

However, at that time she wasn’t ready to make a formal complaint.

In 2020 the victim, who is now in her 50s, was re-contacted by the police where it was established that Collins, who used to perform as a busker in Burnley, had raped her on more than one occasion when she was under the age of 16.

Such was the impact on the victim, she had to seek counselling years after the attack due to ongoing nightmares.

Collins, 58, of no fixed address, was charged with rape but denied any wrongdoing.

He was found guilty of the offence following a trial at Burnley Crown Court.

Appearing at the same court today (August 17) to be sentenced for 11 counts of rape and one count of indecent assault, Collins was told that he would have to serve two thirds of the 12-year sentence before he is eligible to go before the parole board.

At that point he will have to demonstrate that he no longer poses a risk to the public or he will remain in jail.

In a statement, the brave victim said: “First, I would like to commend Detective Constables Treena Peel and Kyle Hazelaar of Lancashire Police.

"They have supported me throughout this process from the early stages of the investigation right through to the conclusion of the trial.

"They have been a huge source of support and I could not have wished for more.

"Secondly, I would like to implore any victim of sexual violence or abuse, whether recent or historic, to come forward to report the crimes against you to seek justice.

"I never imagined I would have my case heard and believed after more than three decades.”

Collins has previously been ordered to sign the sex offenders register for life.

If you or somebody you know has been the victim of a sexual offence email forcecontrolroom@lancashire.police.uk or call 101.

If a crime is in progress always call 999.