Oxford

Man jailed for attempted rape in Oxford in 1986

Philip Spriggs Image copyright TVP
Image caption Philip Spriggs attacked his victim as she was walking in Oxford

A serial child abuser has been jailed for the attempted rape of a teenager 31 years ago.

Balaclava-clad Philip Spriggs, 52, jumped out of bushes and grabbed the 13-year-old as she walked home near Pullens Lane, Oxford, in January 1986.

He dragged her to woods nearby and attempted to rape her, but she escaped.

Spriggs, who was jailed for 17 years in 2015 for sex offences against two children, was given another 12-year term.

His latest sentence will run consecutively.

'31 long years'

A jury at Oxford Crown Court found him guilty of one count of attempted rape.

He was serving at HMP Wood Hill when Thames Valley Police reopened the investigation into the 1986 attack.

Susan Krikler, senior crown prosecutor, said the result was down to "scientific developments and the courage of the victim".

She added: "I commend her for her bravery. Time has not diminished the effect this incident has had on the victim's life. She has waited 31 long years for today's result.

"I hope that the conviction and today's sentence will offer some comfort to her after all these years."

Pete Beirne, head of the Thames Valley Police major crime review team, said: "Following the emergence of new DNA evidence last year, officers were able to identify Spriggs as a suspect.

"I hope the victim feels that justice has been done now that this dangerous offender will have no prospect of freedom for many years."

Spriggs was previously found guilty of a total of 20 charges, including 11 counts of rape committed over seven years between 2007 and 2014.

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