X Factor contestant, 55, raped nine women over three decades

X-Factor contestant Phillip Blackwell, 55, pictured, admitted raping several women over the course of 22 years

A former X-Factor contestant is facing jail after pleading guilty to raping a string of women over a three decade period. 

Phillip Blackwell, 55, followed young women who were walking home at night alone before launching his sickening sex attacks across three counties.

He was branded a ‘dangerous and manipulative sexual predator’ after he admitted being a serial rapist at Warwick Crown Court today.

The ex-supply teacher achieved momentary fame on the ITV show in 2008 when his version of Spandau Ballet’s Gold failed to impress judges Cheryl, Louis and Simon.

He later went on to tour the county and perform alongside other stars at the X-Factor Live events in 2009 which featured Alexandra Burke and JLS.

The offences took place in Nuneaton, Warwickshire, and Birmingham in the late 1990s and in Cornwall between 2005 and 2019 – before and after his time on the show.

The court heard the sex monster committed a total 31 sexual offences against nine victims over 22 years ‘while maintaining a veneer of respectability’ in his community.

Blackwell, of Launceston, Cornwall, was charged in January following a joint investigation between Warwickshire and West Midlands Police.

In February, he pleaded guilty to sex offences against five women, four of which occurred in Birmingham over 1997 and 1998 and one in Nuneaton in May 1998.

In each case, the young women were walking alone in the early hours when they were attacked from behind before being raped or subjected to other sexual offences.

He admitted four counts of rape, one count of attempted rape, five counts of indecent assault and one count of false imprisonment.

Warwickshire Police then launched one of their biggest ever operations and tracked down more victims in Cornwall.

He then appeared via video link where he pleaded guilty to a further 20 sexual offences against three women.

This included nine counts of rape, four counts of sexual assault, two counts of assault by penetration and three counts of voyeurism.

He also pleaded guilty to one count of taking indecent photographs of a child and another count of voyeurism in relation to that same child.

Blackwell, pictured in August 2008, admitted four counts of rape, one count of attempted rape, five counts of indecent assault and one count of false imprisonment

Blackwell, pictured in August 2008, admitted four counts of rape, one count of attempted rape, five counts of indecent assault and one count of false imprisonment 

Blackwell was told to expect a lengthy jail term when he is sentenced at the same court on July 27.

Detective Chief Inspector Caroline Corfield, from the Warwickshire Police Major Investigation Unit, said afterwards: ‘Blackwell offended on a huge scale.

‘It is clear he is a dangerous and manipulative sexual predator who has caused untold misery to his victims for the purpose of his own sexual gratification.

‘He poses a serious danger to women.

‘Today, after more than 20 years of offending, Blackwell’s past has caught up with him and now he must face the consequences of his actions.

‘Most of the survivors of his crimes have had to wait many years for justice and will have been forced to relive the horrors Blackwell subjected them to.

‘All the women he has attacked and abused have shown immense courage and I hope they can take some comfort from this conviction.’

Karen Hackett, of the Crown Prosecution Service, said: ‘The CPS worked in partnership with Warwickshire Police who led investigations involving Devon and Cornwall and West Midlands Police to build a strong prosecution case against Phillip Blackwell to reflect the gravity of the offences.

‘The weight of the evidence against him was such that he had little option but to plead guilty.

‘Blackwell is a prolific sex offender who committed 31 sexual offences against nine victims over 22 years while maintaining a veneer of respectability in the communities in which he lived.

‘His victims have all suffered life-changing consequences due to his crimes, and we are pleased that he has finally been brought to justice.’

During his TV appearance 12 years ago, the X-Factor flop told Cheryl how he hoped to achieve ‘multi platinum-selling albums, all over the world’.

He also boasted that he believed there was nobody better in the UK charts than him at the time.

He then left Simon Cowell and Louis Walsh in stitches with his comical rendition of Gold in which he held the final note of the song for almost 30 seconds.

Described as a 43-year-old supply teacher at the time, he told the judges: ‘I think if you get me in the studio, I’ll be able to get albums out there. Its a different act.’

He later said: ‘Louis loved me but Simon didn’t so it was left to Cheryl. I knew she wouldn’t have the guts to go against Simon. She’s gutless.’ 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk