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X factor reject whose version of Spandau Ballet’s Gold went viral admits 13 rapes and 31 sex offences

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AN X Factor contestant whose version of Spandau Ballet’s Gold went viral has admitted to a total of 31 sexual offences – including 13 rapes.

Phillip Blackwell, 55, has pleaded guilty to committing 31 sexual offences against nine victims, over three decades, and across three different counties.

ITV

The X Factor contestant will be sentenced on 27 July after pleading guilty to 31 sexual offences[/caption]

The weight of the evidence against Blackwell meant he had “little option” but to plead guilty to the crimes, which included a total of 13 rapes.

He was first arrested on 22 January from his home in Launceston, Cornwall, before appearing at Warwick Crown Court in February.

Blackwell pleaded guilty to 11 sexual offences against five women in the West Midlands – including four counts of rape, one count of attempted rape and five counts of indecent assault.

The young women were all walking alone in the early hours of the morning when they were attacked from behind between 1997 and 1998.

However, Warwickshire Police then decided to investigate a further string of sexual offences against three women from 2005 to 2019 in Cornwall.

Today, after more than 20 years of offending, Blackwell’s past has caught up with him and now he must face the consequences of his actions


Caroline Corfield, Detective Chief Inspector

In May, appearing in court via video link, Blackwell pleaded guilty to a further 20 sexual offences – including nine counts of rape – bringing the total number of offences to 31.

Blackwell also admitted to four counts of sexual assault, two counts of assault by penetration and three counts of voyeurism.

He also pleaded guilty to one count of taking indecent photos of a child, and a count of voyeurism in relation to the same child.

Blackwell appeared at court again this morning, and will be sentenced on 27 July.

Detective Chief Inspector Caroline Corfield from the Warwickshire Police Major Investigation Unit said: “Blackwell offended on a huge scale.

“It is clear he is a dangerous and manipulative sexual predator who has caused untold misery to his victims for the purpose of his own sexual gratification.

“He poses a serious danger to women.

“Today, after more than 20 years of offending, Blackwell’s past has caught up with him and now he must face the consequences of his actions.

‘DANGER TO WOMEN’

“Most of the survivors of his crimes have had to wait many years for justice and will have been forced to relive the horrors Blackwell subjected them to.

“All the women he has attacked and abused have shown immense courage and I hope they can take some comfort from this conviction.”

Blackwell first appeared on television back in 2008 and gave one of X Factor’s most bizarre auditions.

The former classroom supervisor ended his version of Spandau Ballet’s hit Gold by singing the last note for almost 30 seconds.

He later accused Girls Aloud singer Cheryl of backing Simon Cowell’s decision to kick him off the show.

He said: “Louis loved me but Simon didn’t so it was left to Cheryl. I knew she wouldn’t have the guts to go against Simon. She’s gutless.”

Karen Hackett, of the CPS, said: “The CPS worked in partnership with Warwickshire Police who led investigations involving Devon and Cornwall and West Midlands Police to build a strong prosecution case against Phillip Blackwell to reflect the gravity of the offences.


“The weight of the evidence against him was such that he had little option but to plead guilty.

“Blackwell is a prolific sex offender who committed 31 sexual offences against nine victims over 22 years while maintaining a veneer of respectability in the communities in which he lived.

“His victims have all suffered life-changing consequences due to his crimes, and we are pleased that he has finally been brought to justice.”

Warwickshire Police

Blackwell has pleaded guilty to 31 sexual offences – including 13 rapes[/caption]

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