LONDON: Detectives have released images of a suspect they are hunting over a string of “despicable” sex attacks on girls and young women on buses. At least six people have made complaints about a man matching the same description on buses in Lewisham and Southwark, southeast London. But the Metropolitan Police has warned there could be more victims. The suspect is described as black, aged in his 20s and with short black hair and stubble. He wore blue baggy jeans and a black bomber jacket with a white fur trim on the hood. The first of a string of reported sexual assaults took place on 24 January when two women, aged 22 and 17, were targeted on a number 12 bus in Dulwich around 9.30pm. Then on 27 January, a 17-year-old girl who boarded a 176 bus at 3.15pm was groped by a man who sat opposite her and intentionally fell onto her.
At around 5pm the same day, a 13-year-old girl reported being sexually assaulted on a 363 bus. Later another girl of the same age reported a man made her feel uncomfortable by engaging in a conversation. At 5.50pm a 15-year-old boarded a 171 bus at Catford train station. The suspect sat opposite her and touched her knee. She got off the bus because she was frightened, but the man pursued her and groped her before she managed to flee. Detective Constable Alex Price said: “We are keen to trace the suspect carrying out these despicable attacks on young girls and women in public. “Five victims have been targeted by this man and we believe there could be many more victims who are yet to come forward.” Police warned anyone who sees the suspect not to approach him but to contact 999. Anyone with information should call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.