Black cab rapist John Worboys, 62, is ‘as dangerous as ever’

Black cab rapist John Worboys must die behind bars because he is as dangerous now as he was when he began fantasising about drugging and abusing women more than 30 years ago, the Old Bailey heard today. 

The 62-year-old pervert, who now goes by the name John Derek Radford, plied customers with champagne laced with sedatives so he could sexually assault them.

Today Worboys appeared at the Old Bailey for sentencing after admitting four attacks between 2000 and 2008. 

Prosecutor Duncan Penny said today: ‘He was fanaticising about offending since 1986. The defendant is potentially as dangerous now as he was at the first sentence.’ 

Worboys (sketched in the dock) targeted women who hailed his cab and drugged them and will be sentenced for attacking four more women today

John Worboys (pictured in February 2018, right sketched in the dock) targeted women who hailed his cab and drugged them and will be sentenced for attacking four more women today

Worboys' black cab (pictured) was used to pick up victims who were offered cut price fares and an alcoholic drink that were usually spiked so he could abuse them

Worboys’ black cab (pictured) was used to pick up victims who were offered cut price fares and an alcoholic drink that were usually spiked so he could abuse them

In 2009 he was jailed indefinitely for public protection with a minimum of eight years for sex attacks on 12 women.

How rapist boasted of stripper past to carry out attacks 

Black cab rapist John Worboys boasted of his past as a stripper as he preyed on women who trusted him to get them home safely from a night out.

The London taxi driver, now 62, turned to drugging and sexually assaulting his female passengers after he gave up the stage.

Worboys lied about winning the lottery or big bets and claimed to have been a stripper with the Chippendales to persuade his victims to drink champagne spiked with strong sedatives.

He was described as a ‘repetitive predatory sexual offender’ as he was jailed indefinitely with a minimum eight-year term in 2009 for attacks on 12 women.

Four more women came forward last year to make fresh allegations that Worboys had drugged them after picking them up in his cab.

After admitting the offences, he now faces another lengthy jail term .

But last year the Parole Board cleared him for release claiming the sex offender is now an ‘open and honest’ person in a blunder that shocked Britain.

Days later four women, who never went to police because they believed he couldn’t be released, rushed to tell detectives their horrific stories.   

The court heard from women he abused – most didn’t come forward until a Parole Board blunder last year almost led to his release.

The first victim described an ordeal similar to many other women who Worboys used his ‘rape kit’ to abuse.

She was attacked after getting into his black cab after leaving London wine bar where the driver told her he’d had a huge win on the horses and wanted to celebrate with a drink with her – but the wine was spiked.

The second woman was attacked in similar circumstances but this time he claimed to have won the lottery. She fell unconscious and flashbacks later revealed Worboys abused her.  

Worboys had a bag of £40,000 in banknotes he claimed was won in a casino – he then gave the third woman a flute of drugged Champagne and she remembered nothing more after that.   

A fourth victim was picked up by Worboy after a night out and also given had drugged Champagne and said she was attacked – and Worboys’ face ‘has always stuck in her memory ‘.

White-haired Worboys, who changed his name to John Derek Radford last year, appeared in the dock wearing silver spectacles and a light blue shirt ahead of his sentence later today.

Using a secret mixture of powerful drugs and alcohol, Worboys drugged young women in the back of his cab leaving him free to do as he pleased with them.

The potency of the concoction made from household items is so strong that the courts have barred any publication of its ingredients.

Referring to a pre-sentence report in August, prosecutor Duncan Penny said: ‘He was fanaticising about offending since 1986. The defendant is potentially as dangerous now as he was at the first sentence.’

Worboys was jailed in 2009 for sex assaults on 12 women

Worboys was a stripper for 13 years between 1987 and 1999. He called himself 'Terry the Minder' or 'The Minder'. This is a promotional picture from his early stripping days

Worboys was a stripper for 13 years between 1987 and 1999. He called himself ‘Terry the Minder’ or ‘The Minder’. This is a promotional picture from his early stripping days

Ms Justice McGowan will have to decide whether to declare Worboys ‘dangerous’ in the legal sense of the term, when she sentences him.

Four women claimed Worboys lured them into his cab at the dead of night offering them champagne and bragging about winning on the horses and lottery.

How indeterminate sentences keep thousands of dangerous criminals behind bars

Indeterminate sentences for public protection (IPPs) were introduced in 2005 to keep offenders behind bars indefinitely unless they prove they are fit for release.

For the first time, it enabled judges to set a minimum term, but no maximum sentence to be served.

However, some inmates convicted of relatively minor crimes languished in jail for years, causing the European courts to overturn the policy in 2012.

Despite abolition, nearly 2,500 prisoners sentenced under the law remain behind bars, unsure of when they will be released.

Black-cab rapist John Worboys was among the first of the more serious cases to be freed, but the decision was later overturned in the courts and he pleaded guilty to further offences last month.

There are several other notorious killers, rapists and terrorists on IPP sentences who are due for release after serving their minimum term.

Vanessa George’s cohort, Angela Allen, who raped a girl of three, has already served the five-year minimum of her IPP sentence imposed in December 2009.

The ringleader of the paedophile gang, Colin Blanchard – who was jailed in 2011 for a minimum of nine years – will also be eligible for parole shortly.

Mr Penny added: ‘These offences came to light as a result of publicity gained by the reporting of the initial decision of the parole board to release this defendant towards the end of 2017.

‘That decision, namely the decision of the parole board was challenged by way of application for judicial review and in due course was quashed by the divisional court.

‘Following further investigation of the matters that came to light because of that publicity, the defendant was charged with four further matters to which he pleaded guilty.

The taxi driver, originally from Enfield, north London, was told by Justice McGowan in June this year that the maximum sentence he faces is life in prison. 

In September Worboys forced one of his victims to relive her ordeal in court yesterday as he sought to avoid a life sentence.

He is already in jail for giving women passengers spiked champagne before sexually assaulting them but faces a longer prison sentence after admitting a string of other attacks.

Worboys, 62, appeared at the Old Bailey via video link from HMP Wakefield in West Yorkshire, home to some of the country’s most notorious inmates.

In 2009 he was jailed indefinitely for the public protection, with a minimum of only eight years, for sex attacks on 12 women.

Last year the Parole Board ruled he should stay in prison after initially approving his release, citing his ‘sense of sexual entitlement’ and a need to control women.

After the ensuing outrage, four more victims came forward and, at the Old Bailey in June, he pleaded guilty to further crimes including administering a drug with intent to commit a sexual offence.

The maximum possible sentence is life in prison with the possibility of a higher minimum term to reflect the length and gravity of his offending. But yesterday Worboys made a bid for a less severe sentence by disputing the date of one of his attacks.

His victim says she was attacked after she got into his cab when she left a wine bar in Mayfair, central London, in 2000 or 2001.

She remembers Worboys pulling over on a side road off the A40 and giving her an alcoholic drink in a plastic cup, which she drank. 

The prosecution said earlier: ‘That is her last memory that evening.’ 

But Worboys claims it happened much later, after January 1, 2003. 

After his prosecution police released images of Worboys' 'rape kit', which he kept in his cab, which included drugs and condoms

After his prosecution police released images of Worboys’ ‘rape kit’, which he kept in his cab, which included drugs and condoms

His dispute over the date meant his victim, who came forward last year but cannot be named for legal reasons, was forced to give evidence to the Old Bailey.

She insisted her dating of the incident was accurate.

Worboys, who now uses the name John Derek Radford, initially indicated he wanted to give evidence in the dispute over the dates but later changed his mind. 

One of the rapist’s alleged victims said yesterday: ‘I want to see him die in prison. 

This man should never be allowed out.’ Becki Houlston, 46, from Bournemouth, is convinced she was targeted by Worboys after she got into a black cab when she left a bar in Bournemouth in 2002 after a night out with friends.

The driver claimed he had won money at the casino and gave her champagne that had a ‘vile’ bitter taste. She does not believe she was sexually assaulted.

Worboys was not charged over her case, but Miss Houlston’s story has the same chilling pattern as that of his many other victims.

She said: ‘He has shown no remorse and is the worst predator imaginable. I can’t see how anyone would see he is fit for release.’

The former milkman and junior Hertfordshire dairy manager had bragged of a 13-year career as a stripper, working under the stage name Terry the Minder.

Working six days a week, including Sunday lunchtimes, stage performances, hen nights and kissograms across London and the South East gave him access to hundreds of women.

Combined with work as a security guard and cab driver, Worboys earned thousands of pounds every week and lived like a pop star.

Publicity photographs of him taken in the 1980s and 1990s show him with a broad grin and a peroxide blond-tinted mullet haircut.

He posed for glossy shots dressed in American-style police uniforms, tuxedos, satin underwear and bright rubber-look outfits.

In 2006, under an assumed name, Worboys even recorded an amateur adult film, with one reviewer noting he was one of a ‘group of ageing guys who look and sound like extras from the cast of EastEnders’.

Worboys gave up the stage in 1999, aged 42, turning to driving a cab full-time.

It was not long before he started carrying out sex attacks on his female passengers after convincing them to drink champagne laced with drugs.

Worboys would claim to have won the lottery or some money on the horses and tell his victims about his stripper past.

Kathy Martin, who had been his girlfriend for a year at the time of his arrest, said she had no idea of his double life.

She said he gave no clues about his predatory night-time activities and she was left dumbstruck when police knocked on her door.

But Ms Martin, who ultimately offered to give evidence against Worboys, said: ‘He is a good conman, but I think he has conned himself. He thought he pulled the wool over everyone’s eyes.’

John Worboys: 13-year timeline of black cab rapist’s sexual assaults

Black cab rapist John Worboys, 62, has pleaded guilty to drugging four more women in a bid to sexually assault them. Here is a timeline of some of the key events in the history of the case:


Worboys passes The Knowledge to become a taxi driver in London. He also continues working as a stripper at night. 


The first allegation of sexual assault is made that would later be linked to Worboys. Several more, all involving drivers of black cabs in London, are made over the next four years.


October 14: A 25-year-old woman meets John Worboys in Fulham, West London, and wakes up after a drink to find him assaulting her

November 9: A journalist gets into his cab in Regent Street and has a drink before falling unconscious, and later waking up with no memory of what happened


April: Worboys offers a 22-year-old woman a lift from Oxford Street to Middlesex for £30, before becoming aggressive when she refused to take a drink he offered her

June 29: Worboys offers to take an office worker from Regent Street to her home in Tufnell Park. She drank champagne and accused him of forcibly kissing her

July: Worboys picks up a student in Chelsea and offers her £50 to drink a glass of vodka, but she refuses to perform a sex act for £350

July 26: Worboys forces a pill into the mouth of a teenage student who got into his taxi at Covent Garden

July 27: Worboys is arrested after CCTV shows him carrying the teenager out of the cab at 4.30am, but he is released after denying sexual conduct

December 21: Victim claims Worboys raped her while driving her home to Putney from Tottenham Court Road. His DNA is found in a semen stain on her underwear


January 3: Worboys offers to take a 29-year-old insurance broker home to Hornchurch from the City for £20. She claimed he asked her to perform a sex act before exposing himself

January 31: A 31-year-old advertising director gets into his cab outside a Soho club for Herne Hill. She drinks champagne and is assaulted

February: A new mother returns home to Twickenham and her friend tells Worboys she is on maternity leave. She has a drink and felt drowsy, and her fiance later found her slumped by the toilet at home unable to move her legs

February 13: A 30-year-old journalist takes a cab with a friend outside a Central London restaurant, but only pretends to sip a drink Worboys gives her after she noticed fizzing and foil in the glass. She claimed he asked her to perform a sex act for £5,000, but she told police after his arrest

February 15: An 18-year-old woman and her friend get into Worboys cab at Oxford Street, and he offers her a drink after her friend is dropped off . She initially refused, before losing consciousness and finding herself still in the cab when she came round

February 16: Police arrest Worboys

February 18: Worboys faces charges including one count of rape, four counts of sexual assault and six counts of administering a substance with intent, following an investigation into five attacks. Police say 30 women answered an appeal.


January 20: Worboys’s trial begins as he denies 23 charges, including rape and sexual assault. He is accused of attacking 14 women

March 13: Worboys is convicted at Croydon Crown Court of one count of rape, five sexual assaults, one attempted assault and 12 drugging charges, committed from July 2007 to February 2008

April 21: Worboys is jailed indefinitely at Croydon Crown Court and told he must serve a minimum of eight years


January 20: The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPPC – now the Independent Office for Police Conduct) publishes its inquiry into a series of blunders by Metropolitan Police officers, five of whom were disciplined. They are criticised for missing crucial chances to catch Worboys.

June 15: Judges throw out Worboys’ appeal against conviction.

October 14:  Scotland Yard reveals Worboys may have attacked at least 102 women and say that 19 more victims have come forward since his conviction.


July 23: Two women who were seriously sexually assaulted by Worboys are awarded compensation totalling £41,250 from the Metropolitan Police. The force appeals the decision, finally losing the challenge in the Supreme Court in February 2018.


November: John Worboys is granted release from prison by the Parole Board after just eight years behind bars


January 4: The decision by the Parole Board is made public. Worboys’ victims were not told about the decision before it was announced

January 5: Professor Nick Hardwick, the Chairman of the Parole Board, apologises ‘unreservedly’ to victims who were not told about the decision

January 9: MPs including Labour’s Yvette Cooper and Tory Anna Soubry demand Worboys be banned from London over fears he knows where his victims live

January 13: Justice Secretary David Gauke takes advice on whether a judicial review could reverse the Parole Board’s controversial decision

January 16: The head of the Parole Board criticises ministers for considering challenging the decision

January 17: Victims launch crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to cover the legal fees for a judicial review of the case

January 19: Government decides not to pursue a legal challenge over his release

January 23: Worboys is transferred to HMP Belmarsh, south-east London, ahead of his release. Scotland Yard begin investigating a new sexual assault claim against him

January 25: London mayor Sadiq Khan files an application for a judicial review

January 26: Release of Worboys is put on hold after an ‘urgent application’ was made to the High Court on behalf of two of his victims for a stay of his release

February 4: Worboys is moved back out of the capital

February 7: Professor Hardwick outlines radical proposals to make the reasoning behind its decision public in the wake of outrage

February 21: Supreme Court rules that Met breached the human rights of two of Worboys’ victims by failing to properly investigate their claims, and awarded them £41,250. Decision could lead to other victims of serious crimes suing police forces

March 13: High Court challenge against decision to release Worboys by victims begins. It is revealed that the Parole Board decided to release Worboys because he had learned ‘not to hide negative thoughts and feelings’ during ‘positive’ treatment with psychologists. Court also hears that the board only considered the 12 victims he was convicted of attacking, not the 105 he is suspected of assaulting

March 28: High Court rules to overturn the decision to free him. Professor Hardwick stands down from role as Parole Board Chairman after being told by Justice Secretary David Gauke that his position was ‘untenable’

April 8: Mr Gauke admits he should take equal responsibility for decision that almost freed John Worboys

May: Victims and members of the public can request details of decisions to release criminals from prison for the first time.

August 13: Police question Worboys over more allegations of sexual assault

November 19: Parole Board says Worboys will remain in prison after reversing an earlier decision that he should be released


May 1: Worboys is charged with four further offences of drugging women to rape or sexually assault them

May 23: Worboys appears at Westminster Magistrates’ Court by video-link from Wakefield Prison.

June 20: Worboys pleads guilty to two counts of administering a stupefying or overpowering drug with intent to commit rape or indecent assault and two counts of administering a substance with intent to commit a sexual offence under the Sexual Offences Act.