A “brazen” predator who raped children and lone women over a five-year period has been sentenced to 17 years in prison.
Leon Alexander, 31, was apprehended after raping a girl in north London, which led to him being found guilty of previous crimes.
Police were called last March by the girl, aged in her mid-teens, who had been raped after leaving a block of flats in Joyce Avenue, Edmonton.
Officers launched an investigation and seized CCTV, which provided an image of a man matching the girl’s description of her attacker.
The image was circulated among police and Alexander, of Allington Avenue in Tottenham, was identified, arrested, charged, and remanded to prison.
Detective Constable Rebecca Mussington, who led the investigation, found Alexander had been arrested on suspicion of sexual offences on previous occasions, but charges had never been brought by the CPS.
This included a rape in 2010, involving a woman Alexander had been speaking to online.
He took the victim back to an address in Tottenham where he raped her. An investigation had been carried out at the time and he was arrested and interviewed, but there had not been enough evidence at the time to charge him with the offence.
Alexander had also been charged with a sexual assault in 2017 in Edmonton, in which he followed a woman he knew out of a shop and assaulted her behind a car before she managed to run away.
On that occasion he had given her his mobile number, which meant police were able to identify and arrest him shortly after the offence.
DC Mussington passed both the files to the CPS again, who this time agreed to charge him for both offences.
Following a trial at Wood Green Crown Court in April, Alexander was found guilty of two counts of rape, one count of sexual assault by touching and one count of sexual activity with a child.
The judge said Alexander had demonstrated “indiscriminate and unpredictable” sexual behaviour, and there was a risk of repetition should he not be jailed for an extended period of time.
DC Mussington said: “Leon Alexander is a dangerous and opportunistic predator who targeted a child and lone women. He was extremely brazen in his offending, carrying out his assaults in open spaces where they could have been seen by any passing member of the public.
“Following the attacks he would often try and exchange messages with the victims, trying to have light-hearted conversations in order to make it appear as though what had happened was consensual and not serious.
“The victims and witnesses in this investigation have been incredibly strong and it is down to them that Alexander has now been convicted. The seriousness of his abhorrent crimes is reflected in this lengthy sentence.
She added: “We know women and girls suffer significant amounts of harm every day, mostly at the hands of men. My priority – and that of every officer and member of staff – is to target those like Alexander who commit this kind of violence.
“Anyone who is victim or witness to sexual assault should contact police. There is zero tolerance for such serious offences and we have specially trained officers who will listen and investigate where needed.”