A DANGEROUS York man who sexually and physically attacks women for no apparent reason has been jailed for 12 years.

For ten years, Andrew John Bailey has targeted young women walking alone at night on streets or cycle paths in York and Selby.

On each occasion, he has come up from behind them before raping, robbing or sexually and physically attacking them. For all but two of the offences, he was on parole and living under probation service supervision at its hostel in Boroughbridge Road, York.

Detective Constable Sam Harding of North Yorkshire Police, who brought him to justice, welcomed the sentence and said: “I think we have been very lucky he has not progressed to do something worse.”

Jailing Bailey for 12 years for his three most recent attacks, the Recorder of York, Judge Stephen Ashurst told him he was a “deeply disturbed” and “very dangerous young man”.

“You are someone who attacks women for no discernible reason, and the public, I am afraid, must be protected from you,” he told York Crown Court. “You have robbed and targeted vulnerable women.

“I am quite convinced if you had not been detected after the assault on the third woman, you would have gone on to carry out similar attacks on other women in this city and there would have been further victims.

“You have not shown a shred of remorse. You are an arrogant man. You are devious. You will tell all manner of lies to get out of this situation.

“There is no alternative here but to pass a very long prison sentence.

“It is only by passing such a sentence the public can be adequately protected.” Bailey, 31, of no fixed address and previously of Tennant Street, Selby, has already served sentences of seven and five years for offences against women.

Bailey denied three charges of causing actual bodily harm to three women on separate dates and at separate locations on cycle paths and beside a foot subway near the city centre in August and September 2013, but was convicted by a jury after an eight-day trial.

The jury heard all three victims were attacked from behind and suffered minor injuries.

The judge said the locations were quiet and could only have been known to someone who “knew the centre of York like the back of his hand”.

When Bailey attacked each of his latest victims, he was on parole having been released partway through a five-year sentence.

That was imposed after he admitted robbing a Norwegian teenager by punching her in the face, kicking her in the back and ripping her bag off her shoulder in May 2009 and attempting to rob a Korean student by grabbing her from behind, dragging her along the ground and kicking her in the stomach and ribs in June 2009.

The street muggings occurred just months after he had been released on parole partway through a seven-year prison term for raping and indecently assaulting a 20-year-old woman in February 2004 when he was 21.

He ran up behind her as she was walking home and punched her to the ground where he sexually attacked her before dragging her into a nearby garden and raping her twice.

Then he forced her to relive her ordeal in court by denying two charges of rape.

He admitted indecently assaulting her.