A 37-year-old man was sentenced to 15 years in prison for raping a woman who responded to his room rental advertisement.
Ion Cojan, formerly of Northampton, raped a woman at Delapre Park in Northampton in 2019 after posting an online advertisement for a room in his home for rent.
A woman responded, and they agreed to meet in Northampton town centre on
Northamptonshire Police said the woman agreed to go for a coffee but Cojan instead drove to Delapre Park, where he parked up near the lake in Ransome Road and raped her in the back of his vehicle before driving her back to the town centre.
After the woman reported the crime to the police, an investigation was launched that included speaking with potential witnesses, reviewing the man’s profile on the room rental website, and inspecting CCTV and ANPR cameras.
Police identified Cojan as the suspect, and he was arrested and charged with rape.
He was found guilty after a trial at Northampton Crown Court in September and sentenced to 15 years in prison on Thursday.
Lead Investigator, Detective Constable David Burrage, said: ‘Whilst no sentence will make up for the ordeal Ion Cojan put this woman through, I am really pleased for her that he is now going down for a significant period of time.
‘She has shown incredible bravery and resolve throughout our investigation and the court process and I hope the conclusion of this case allows her to move forward and onto brighter things.
‘She can feel proud of the fact that her courage has ensured that a rapist is now behind bars and unable to harm anyone else.
‘Tackling violence against women and girls is a priority for Northamptonshire Police and I hope this case shows that we take these cases extremely seriously and will do everything in our power to put the offenders behind bars.’
When Cojan was convicted of the offence on September 21, he commended the victim for her bravery in pursuing the police case.
He said: ‘I am really pleased that Ion Cojan has been found guilty of this awful offence and I want to commend the survivor in this case for her incredible bravery.
‘We never underestimate how much courage it takes to report a sexual offence to the police but this woman has supported our investigation from start to finish, a process which has been lengthy and I am sure, very demanding on her.’
Northamptonshire Police said in a statement it ‘takes reports of sexual assault extremely seriously and we will treat all calls and reports with the sensitivity and confidentiality that they deserve.
‘We will believe you, we will support you, and we will do all we can to make sure those responsible pay for their crimes.’
It added the details of the crime had been published with the victim’s full support.