Violent Stonebridge sex attacker jailed for life

Harrow Crown Court, London

Harrow Crown Court, where Dorin Varga, 35, of Victoria Avenue, Wembley, was jailed for eight years - Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A violent sex attacker who targeted a lone woman on a bus as she made her way home after a night out has been jailed.

Dorin Varga, of Victoria Avenue in Wembley, approached his victim on the N18 bus on August 8, 2020, and sat beside her before touching and kissing her despite her protests.

The 35-year-old had previously approached her at the Green Man pub in High Street, Harlesden, where she rejected his advances.

When the victim got off the night bus at about 4am in Hilltop Avenue, Stonebridge, she was followed by Varga.

As she tried to get away, he smashed her head against a brick wall and repeatedly punched her in the face.

He also tried to rape her before he stole her phone and fled.

The victim was left with a bloodied face and significant facial injuries which required stitches in hospital.

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One of her earrings had been ripped out, and clumps of her hair were also found at the scene.

Varga was arrested and charged on August 15, 2020; he subsequently pleaded guilty to sexual assault, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, robbery and attempted rape.

The 35-year-old was given a life sentence - with a minimum tariff of eight years' imprisonment - at Harrow Crown Court on Thursday (March 10). 

Time already spent in custody meant this was reduced to six years and 148 days. 

A life sentence is mandatory in cases where the offender commits certain serious offences, and the court considers they pose a risk of harm to the public in terms of further offending.

The court confirmed Varga was sentenced according to this criteria.

Police had been able to track him down through CCTV footage and the Oyster card he had used on the journey.

Photos taken in the pub on the night of the attack with Varga in the background also formed part of the investigation.

Samira Noor-Khan, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said: “This was an unprovoked and extremely violent assault on a woman who was simply making her way home after a night out.

"She should have been safe.

“Dorin Varga’s actions were predatory and brutal. He preyed on a victim who was alone, intoxicated and had clearly rejected his advances."

She added: "He thought he could get away with his crime, but the strong CCTV evidence meant the police were easily able to identify him."