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Hunt launched for serial rapist.

Summary: Police are hunting a man who they believe has raped four women in late night attacks that began on Valentine's Day.

Police are hunting a man who they believe has raped four women in late night attacks that began on Valentine's Day.

The victims, aged between 16 and 25, were raped as they walked in Hounslow and Richmond, southwest London and police believe the incidents are linked.

The first incident happened at 3am on February 14 as the victim was walking along Inwood Road, Hounslow. The second attack occured at around 3.30am on February 22 in Hounslow Road, at the junction with Brainton Avenue.

The third rape took place at approximately 11.45pm on April 30 after the victim walked into Crane Park from Hospital Bridge Road.

The fourth incident happened shortly after midnight on May 4 after the victim walked along a footpath between Telford Road and Harvey Road. All the women were approached from behind, pulled to the ground and raped.

Police say that in all four cases the suspect is described as having a dark complexion, is aged in his mid-to-late 20s, has chubby cheeks and thick eyebrows.

One of the victims described the suspect as having dark hair and two victims say he was wearing a sweet-smelling aftershave.

Detective Inspector Andy Perrott from the Metropolitan Police's Homicide and Serious Crime Command said: "I would like to speak to anybody who may have been in the vicinity of these attacks and saw or heard anything suspicious.

"I would particularly urge anyone who believes that they recognise our description of this man, who thinks they may know who he is, or who may have come into contact with him in any circumstances, to call our incident room or, if you want to remain anonymous, Crimestoppers."

Commander Steve Bloomfield said: "I want to ensure that Richmond and Hounslow are safe places to live and visit.

"We are taking these incidents very seriously and have taken a number of measures to prevent further offences and reassure the public. These include increased uniform and plain-clothed patrols of the area and the distribution of safety advice to members of the community.

"In this advice we are urging young women who are travelling late at night that wherever possible to try to walk with friends, to keep to well-lit main roads, to be aware of what's going on around them, and to pre-book and use licensed cabs."

Anyone with any information is urged to call the incident room on 0208 785 8244 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

Independent Television News Limited 2009. All rights reserved.

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Publication:Independent Television News Limited (ITN)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:May 21, 2009
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