By Tony Winterburn • 27 July 2020 • 18:28
A “pure evil” former X-Factor contestant is facing years behind bars after launching “calm and calculated” sex attacks on nine defenceless women over a 22-year period.
Blackwell admitted offences
Warwick Crown Court heard that serial rapist Phillip Blackwell, whose X-Factor audition was broadcast in the 2008 series, had admitted the offences at a previous hearing, he is set to be sentenced on Monday.
The court heard he used a camcorder to film himself attacking young women after launching his first assault in 1997. The 56-year-old “carefully targeted” five young vulnerable women who were walking alone in Birmingham, Coventry and Nuneaton.
Phillip Blackwell – who went viral for his cover of Spandau Ballet’s Gold – filmed the terrifying rapes and even covered some of his victims’ eyes with tape.
Blackwell, of Western Road, Launceston, pleaded guilty to offences including rape, attempted rape, indecent assault, assault by penetration, voyeurism and false imprisonment.
The attacker, who was a contestant on X Factor in 2008 and toured with its live show in 2009, was described by His Honour Judge Cook as a devious and manipulative man who had left “ruined and blighted lives” in his wake.
Following his plea at court in February, Warwickshire Police took the lead on investigating a string of sexual offences against four women in Cornwall.
Blackwell then appeared via video link at court again in May where he pleaded guilty to a further 20 sexual offences. This included nine counts of rape, four counts of sexual assault, two counts of assault by penetration and three counts of voyeurism. These offences were committed against three women between 2005 and 2019.
He also pleaded guilty to one count of taking indecent photographs of a child and a count of voyeurism in relation to the same child.
Blackwell achieved fleeting fame on the ITV talent show in 2008 when his bizarre version of Spandau Ballet’s Gold failed to impress judges Cheryl, Louis and Simon.
Share this story
Subscribe to our Euro Weekly News alerts to get the latest stories into your inbox!
By signing up, you will create a Euro Weekly News account if you don't already have one. Review our
Share your story with us by emailing email@example.com, by calling +34 951 38 61 61 or by messaging our Facebook page www.facebook.com/EuroWeeklyNews
Download our media pack in either English or Spanish.