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The BBC's Crime Correspondent Stephen Cape
"The jury heard that the pair fed on each other's excitement"
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Tuesday, 3 October, 2000, 18:37 GMT 19:37 UK
Killer's 'accomplice' goes on trial
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A married man with three children has gone on trial accused of being the accomplice of convicted rapist and serial killer John Duffy.

Duffy and David Mulcahy raped 15 women - three of whom were murdered - over a four-year period, the Old Bailey heard.

Mark Dennis, prosecuting, said the pair were friends and shared a "wicked bond".

Most of the women, aged between 15 and 32 years, were targeted at railway stations in and around London between 1982 and 1986. Others were attacked on Hampstead Heath in north London.

Mr Mulcahy denies the murders of Alison Day, 19 in December 1985 Maartje Tamboezer in April 1986 and Anne Lock, 29, the following month.

He further denies seven counts of rape and five counts of conspiracy to rape between October 1982 and March 1985.

For more details of the murders click here.

When he was arrested Duffy claimed he was suffering from complete amnesia.

But in January 1988 he was convicted of two of the murders and four counts of rape - three of which involved him alone - and was jailed for life with a recommendation he serve 30 years.

He has since been told by the Home Office he will never be freed from prison.

Mr Dennis said: "Almost 10 years into the sentence and now nearly 40, he decided to try to face up to the past and come to terms with what he had done."

It is clear each man had complete confidence and trust in each other

Mark Dennis, prosecuting

On 24 March last year Duffy admitted a series of joint rapes - including raping the woman he had been cleared of murdering - and three further rapes he committed without a partner.

He also told police he was prepared to name his accomplice.

Duffy and Mulcahy met at school in Haverstock Hill, north London. Both were bullied and often played truant on nearby Hampstead Heath.

They married, had children and got jobs at Westminster Council and, in October 1982 aged 22 they committed their first rape together.

Mr Dennis said the pair attacked the women when they were on their own - often abducting them and gagging, binding and blindfolding them.

'Wicked bond'

"Both men were equally involved, both supported each other and played a full role, both knowing full well what was to be done and revelling in their attacks.

"It is clear each man had complete confidence and trust in each other. There was a unique but wicked bond between the two men."

In one of their attacks - which they called "going out hunting" - the victim was knocked to the ground and raped in woods after "chilling threats" were made to mutilate her body with a knife.

Alison Day
Alison Day was murdered
Mr Dennis said it was "only a comparatively small step" between the violence of the rapes and murder.

Two of the victims had been strangled with a tourniquet. The body of the third was too badly decomposed to say for sure how she died.

DNA evidence

Mulcahy, a married man with three children, who works as a builder and lives in Chalk Farm, north London, was interviewed by police in July 1986. He denied any knowledge of the rapes or murders.

The following November he was questioned again and denied involvement, seeking to play down his friendship with Duffy, said Mr Dennis.

He was only charged in April 1999 after updated techniques lead to his DNA profile being found on the clothing of one of the rape victims.

The chances of it belonging to someone else was 1,000 million to one.

Mr Dennis told the jury Duffy was expected to give evidence and said: "It is now time for this defendant to face up to his past, a past which has caught up with him."

The trial is due to last for four months.

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