Joseph McCann arrested in Cheshire after new abductions
Police said McCann was being investigated in connection with attacks on 12 victims
McCann (34) is being investigated in connection with seven incidents across Cheshire, Manchester, Lancashire, London and Hertfordshire between April 21st and May 5th. Photograph: PA
Joseph McCann has been arrested over the abduction of two 14-year-old girls and is being investigated in connection with other attacks around the UK, including the rape of an 11-year-old boy.
Police said McCann had been arrested in Congleton, Cheshire, after a standoff with officers on Sunday night.
McCann (34) is being investigated in connection with seven incidents across Cheshire, Manchester, Lancashire, London and Hertfordshire between April 21st and May 5th.
The attacks involved a total of 12 victims aged between 11 and 71, the Metropolitan police said.
DCI Katherine Goodwin, from the Met’s homicide and major crime command, said: “Between Sunday, 21st April and Saturday, 5th May McCann is suspected to have been involved in a number of attacks across different parts of the country.
“I can confirm he is now being investigated for offences committed in Cheshire, Manchester and Lancashire in addition to London and Hertfordshire.
“Detectives from the Met continue to lead on this investigation and are working very closely with policing counterparts where he is suspected to have carried out further offences. These offences will be jointly investigated.
“At this early stage, there are believed to be nine further victims following the attacks in Hertfordshire and London. These attacks were grotesque and horrifying. These victims are now being supported by specialist officers. Further details concerning specific offences will become clearer in due course.
“I would urge any other victims to come forward. We also need to hear from anyone who has been approached or been in contact with McCann.”
Two teenage girls were abducted just before 7pm on Sunday in Congleton, Cheshire.
They were forced into a car in the Cheshire town on Sunday. A black Fiat Punto left the town centre at around 6.45pm and was spotted and pursued by officers before it hit another car and the driver fled, leaving the victims unhurt but “extremely shaken”, Cheshire police said.
Late on Sunday night, McCann was encircled by police, who had tracked him down to an isolated rural area in Congleton.
McCann was reportedly hiding in a tree on a country lane as police helicopters monitored the scene from above.
Cheshire police said trained negotiators talked to the man.
McCann was named last week by police in connection with the abduction and rape of two women who were abducted from the street in north London on the same day, April 25th. It subsequently emerged that he was also a suspect in the abduction and rape of a third woman who was attacked at knifepoint in Watford, Hertfordshire, on April 21st.
Police said a woman in her 30s was falsely imprisoned at a location in Haslingden, Lancashire, on Sunday morning at around 8am and, during the same incident a teenage girl and a boy, aged 11, were raped.
At 1.30pm the same day a woman aged 71 was abducted and raped in Bury, Manchester.
Two hours later, two 13-year-old boys and a 13-year-old girl were abducted in Heywood, Manchester. During that incident the 13-year-old girl was sexually assaulted, police said. – Guardian