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Man convicted for raping teenager more than 35 years ago in Hackney

Simms is currently serving a life sentence for three rapes he committed previously (credit: Met Police)

A man has been convicted for raping a 15-year-old girl in Hackney more than 35 years ago.

Patrick Simms was found guilty at Wood Green Crown Court yesterday (Thursday, 2 March) following a 14-day trial.

The victim met Simms, who was 22 at the time, at a leisure centre in 1987 and had offered her a lift. He then took her back to his home on the Holly Street estate and raped her.

She came to police in 2019 to report the incident.

The court heard how the crime wasn’t reported initially as the victim thought she wouldn’t be believed and that it was shameful for her and her family.

The consequences of the crime stayed with her and after counselling and reflecting she came forward to make the report.

Officers from the Met’s Central East Sapphire Team launched an immediate investigation.

The victim was able to provide officers with Simms’ name, but due to the length of time since the incident there was no further evidence to link him to the crime.

Police carried out extensive trawls of newspaper records both online and in microfiche and paper records at the British Library to show that a picture of him had never been published so the victim was able to go through an identity procedure and positively identify him.

Now aged 58, Simms is already serving a life sentence for three rapes he committed in Hackney in 1993 and 1999.

Detective Sergeant Matthew Cooksey, who led the investigation, said: “Simms is a prolific offender and we are glad that he has now been brought to justice for this offence.

“It is likely, given how dangerous he is, that he will now never be released from prison. Throughout the trial he has tried his hardest to derail it and manipulate the jury.

“I am glad that they have seen through these attempts and unanimously convicted him.

“I want to thank the victim for coming forward and providing the crucial evidence needed to convict him. We hope this shows we will always take reports of this nature seriously, no matter how much time has passed.

“We would urge any others who have been subject to these types of offences to come forward and speak to us.”

In a statement, the victim spoke of the impact the incident has had on all aspects of her life and why she had decided to come forward.

She said: “As my daughter was reaching the age of 16 and the #metoo campaign began, I felt more compelled to find out where this person was who had violated me at such a young age.

“I couldn’t bear the fact that this could happen to my daughter too. I was really anxious about that.

“This person cannot be trusted to live amongst us in society, he was a danger to women from a young age and always will be in my opinion.

“He hurt me in the most cruel and vicious way and I will never be rid of the memory of him raping me. But by seeking justice for what he did I can allow myself closure… I can feel proud of the strength, courage and patience it has taken to get me through the three years of this whole legal process, and 35 years of holding on to a very painful memory.

“I can now try to let that go because I’ve been heard and justice has been served.”



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