Man jailed for rape - Hemel Hempstead

25/11/2016

Stefan Padure, 31, appeared at Luton Crown Court today, Friday, 25 November 2016, and was jailed for 12 years for raping a woman in Hemel Hempstead in March.

Susan Krikler, Senior Crown Prosecutor for Thames and Chiltern Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said: "This case involved the rape of a woman in Hemel Hempstead in March.

"The victim, a woman in her 40s, had been at the Greenacres Tavern in Hemel Hempstead with family on Easter Sunday, 27 March when, just after midnight on Easter Monday, she decided to leave. It is common for those that have been in the pub to give others a lift to the bottom of the hill. A car, driven by Stefan Padure, pulled up next to the victim. Although unknown to her, he offered to drive her home and she got into his car. Padure's driving was fast and erratic and he ignored her directions. She was terrified and contemplated opening the car door, but was worried she would be injured.

"Instead of driving her home as agreed, Padure drove her to the rear of a shopping centre where he grabbed her hair and violently raped her. She was too frightened to fight him off and thought he was going to kill her. After her ordeal, the victim, cleverly, asked to borrow Padure's phone to call her son and tell him she was on her way home, but instead phoned the police and asked for help. On realizing what she was doing he terminated the call. She then asked him to take her home, but on seeing her husband outside her house, he drove off and dropped her off some distance away. She walked for about 10-15 minutes in the pouring rain to get home where she called the police again.

"Padure was subsequently identified from the use of his phone and arrested. During police interviews he claimed the sexual activity had been consensual and then answered 'no comment' to all further questions. However, on 27 September 2016, at Luton Crown Court, due to the strength of evidence against him, he pleaded guilty to three counts of rape and assault by penetration. He pleaded not guilty to kidnapping and assault occasioning actual bodily harm and, after consultation with the victim, it was agreed that these counts will lie on file.

"This was a planned, targeted and violent stranger rape. Padure is clearly an extremely ruthless, predatory and dangerous man.

"This case highlights the commitment of the police and CPS to prosecute cases involving violence against women. The CPS will work closely with partners, as we did with the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit in this case, to ensure that robust criminal cases are put before the courts.

"This prosecution would not have been possible without the courage of the victim, who was willing to support proceedings. The physical and emotional impact on her of the abhorrent actions of Padure is impossible to quantify. I hope that the conviction and today's sentence will offer her some comfort. Our thoughts are very much with her at this time."

Detective Sergeant David Taylor, from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit, said: "This was an absolutely horrendous and violent attack during which the victim believed Padure may kill her. Understandably, she was terrified and at one point considered opening the door of the car, whilst it was moving, to escape.

"She has been extremely brave in supporting the investigation and ensuring this very dangerous man is facing a long time in prison and I would like to thank her. She had already been through so much.

"Clearly, Padure is an extremely dangerous man and the length of sentence passed to him reflects the severity of what he did. Whilst I fully understand the victim will have to live with his actions for the rest of her life, I hope knowing he is not out in public will be of some comfort to her."