A CONVICTED rapist on the run for more than six weeks is today behind bars.
Jason Vincent Longhurst failed to attend his trial but it went ahead in his absence.
Read more: 'Where are the jobs?- Councillor asks questions over Teesworks site
When he appeared before York Crown Court on a bench warrant, the Recorder of York, Judge Sean Morris, told him he had been convicted of rape and strangulation of a teenager with intent to rape her.
He had also been given a nine-year prison sentence.
Longhurst, 44, of Lindsey Avenue, York, showed no reaction to the news.
He pleaded guilty to failure to attend York Crown Court on September 6, the second time in a week he had failed to attend court.
His case was adjourned for the Crown Prosecution Service to decide if it wants to apply for a sexual harm prevention order which would curb his behaviour upon release.
A woman in the public gallery cried as he was taken down to start serving his nine-year sentence.
A judge will decide on November 9 how much extra he will serve for not attending his trial and whether he should be made subject to a sexual harm prevention order.
North Yorkshire Police said after the hearing he had been arrested in East Yorkshire and thanked everyone who had helped in their search for him.
In September, a York Crown Court jury heard how Longhurst, had throttled a teenager in York until she blacked out and then raped her many years ago.
He had been released from prison from a sentence for driving offences hours earlier and was on prison licence at the time.
Jailing him for nine years, Recorder Mariga Mostafa said the rape had had a “catastrophic effect” on the victim and praised her courage and the way she had given evidence. In a personal statement, the victim said: “I cannot put into words how much this has ruined my life.”
On August 16, Longhurst had been due to appear before York Magistrates Court charged with driving whilst disqualified and other driving offences.
When he didn't attend, a warrant was signed for his arrest. It was executed in Wales.
Read more: Great Yorkshire Showground to reopen as Covid vaccination centre
On September 1, he appeared before Cardiff Magistrates Court.
The court granted him bail, on condition that he report to Fulford Road Police Station on each of the four days before his trial and curfewed him to his address at Lindsey Avenue between 9pm and 6am every day.
When he failed to attend the trial, police went round to his home at least twice, but no-one answered the door.
They continued to look for him until he was arrested on Tuesday.
For all the top news updates from right across the region straight to your inbox, sign up to our newsletter here.
Have you got a story for us? Contact our newsdesk on [email protected] or contact 01325 505054