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Rapist Joseph McCann boasted he wanted ‘clean young girls’ months before ‘unstable’ staff freed him to go on rampage

A MONSTER wrote sick jail letters about wanting “clean young girls” before blundering officials freed him to carry out a horrific rape spree, a damning report has found.

Depraved Joseph McCann, 34, wore wigs, told victims he loved them and claimed they were part of a “gypsy initiation ritual” during the rampage.

He had mistakenly been freed automatically half-way through a three-year sentence for burglary and theft in February last year.

A damning report today found he was freed to carry out the rape spree after “major failings” by a team of “unstable” and inexperienced probation staff.

The first of two reports from Chief Inspector of Probation Justin Russell revealed a string of missed opportunities to stop the sicko.

McCann’s victims are now suing the Probation Service for £1million compensation.

During his initial time in jail for theft, McCann was found to be writing “graphic and detailed letters” to his family.

It has emerged for the first time the notes included “threats of sexual violence and referred to wanting a ‘clean young girl’ on release”.

In 2013, more than once the fiend “with the collusion of his family, attempted to hunt down a schoolgirl victim for his twisted fantasies”.

But the report found this was not shared with the probation service and as a result, wasn’t part of any risk assessment on whether he should be released.

Once he was freed, McCann went on to abduct victims from the street and threatened some at knifepoint before brutally raping them for hours on end.

The brute was branded a “classic psychopath” when he was handed 33 life sentences in December.

As he was found guilty of 37 charges – including the rape of a child under 13, kidnap, and sexual assault concerning 11 alleged victims – harrowing blunders began to emerge.

A probation service error two months before the rampage meant McCann was automatically freed from jail after serving his term instead of being recalled to prison.

And the shocking new report has found officials were told McCann bore the gruesome hallmarks of a sex offender in 2011.

But despite the chilling warning, probation officers missed EIGHT chances to keep him behind bars.

Over the space of 11 years, the serial offender had THREE different probation officers responsible for his case in the months leading up to his prison release in February.

He had even been seen by one in April just days before he carried out the first rape.

But the inexperienced team failed to see the danger McCann posed and he embarked on a grisly rape spree across the UK.

Mr Russell said: “McCann was managed by an unstable team, lacking experienced and skilled practitioners. They suffered from poor management oversight, high workloads, poor performance and high staff turnover.”

The creep had a “long history of serious offending” and breaching court orders, he said, adding: “There were signs that he posed an increasing risk to the public. There was evidence of his potential for sexual offending.”

But crucial information, recorded on different systems by various authorities, was “lost” in handovers between staff, Mr Russell said.

Even more appalling, prison staff didn’t share information about the risk McCann posed with probation – meaning there was not a “clear picture” of the monster they were dealing with.

The report also found staff did not give McCann a bed in a bail hostel where he would be monitored by probation after being released from jail.

Instead, he was allowed to live with family where he was not checked up on.

During his two-week cocaine-fuelled reign of terror,  one 17-year-old girl jumped naked from a first-floor window after fearing she would be trafficked abroad when McCann raped her and her 11-year-old brother.

The girl’s mum was tied up with hair straighteners and forced to listen to the muffled screams of her children as the sicko raped them both.

McCann’s gruesome rampage finally came to an end in May this year following a dramatic five-hour stand-off with cops after the fiend fled up a tree.

He then told police: “If you had caught me for the first two, the rest of this wouldn’t have happened.”

The rape spree began in the early hours of April 21 when he bundled a 21-year-old mum into his car at knifepoint as she walked home from a club in Watford.

They then drove to her home where McCann forced her in to her bedroom as her son slept next door and donned a wig as he raped her, saying: “It is normal, it is what they do in the traveller community.”

Exclusive footage obtained by The Sun Online showed McCann pull into a BP garage in Watford just after 9am on April 21.

The young woman was in the passenger seat of his Ford Mondeo at the time.

She reported the attack to police and McCann’s details were put on the Police National Computer and a prison recall was issued by Hertfordshire Police.

But three days later, he subjected a 25-year-old woman to a 14-hour horror ordeal after bundling her into a car when she left a station in Walthamstow.

He raped the terrified victim repeatedly and told her she would never escape him.

McCann then picked up a 21-year-old girl walking in Edgware with her younger sister – while keeping his second victim captive.

Her sibling managed to escape but she was dragged into the car and forced to perform sex acts on the second victim and was also raped several times by McCann.

She told the court: “He told me he had a knife and he was going to cut my throat and drown me.”

The ordeal only ended when the 25-year-old smashed a vodka bottle over McCann’s head when he tried to book them into the Phoenix Lodge hotel in Watford, Herts.

Police then publicly released details of the double kidnap and rape the next day and later issued CCTV.

McCann was finally named on April 30 – with cops offering a £20,000 reward for information after linking him to the attack in Watford.

But the serial sex attacker continued his chilling journey across the country – preying on the mum and her two children in Haslingden, Lancs, on May 5 after meeting her in a bar.

After tying up the mother, he pinned the daughter and 11-year-old down and sexually assaulted them – forcing the teenager to jump from a window and limp and to a relative’s house with a fractured heel.

The girl, whose brother has been left so traumatised he is unable to speak, said: “Because it happened to me and my brother it has kind of ruined the family.”

After the horror attack, McCann then made his way to Ramsbottom where he pounced on a 71-year old pensioner who had just finished loading her bags into her Fiat Punto at Morrisons.

He attacked her in a nearby industrial estate after telling her “so, we will have sex now” and then picked up a 13-year-old girl as the OAP drove him in her car on the same day.

He swigged from a bottle of sparkling wine as he told the girl he was in love with her before abusing her.

She said: “When I was in the car he tried to stab me in the leg with a pen. He kept saying that apparently I am going to go out with him, he asked me if I had a boyfriend.”

They managed to escape when McCann pulled into Knutsford services on the M6 but the monster continued unfazed to Congleton, Cheshire, to continue his rampage.

McCann snatched two 14-year-old girls and threatened to “chop them up” a machete as he forced them into the Fiat.

But as he drove away he was spotted by a police patrol car and sped off with the two terrified girls screaming in the back seat.

Dashcam footage showed the fiend driving the wrong way on a roundabout and smashing into a Mercedes as he desperately tried to flee police.

After losing officers in a housing estate, McCann then abandoned the car with the two girls inside and was next picked up on CCTV running past a man cleaning a driveway and dashing through his garden.

He swapped his T-shirt with clothes drying on a washing line and hopped in a taxi from a restaurant in Stoke.

McCann then climbed up a tree as negotiators along with paramedics were deployed to the scene.

He was finally arrested at 2.36am – five hours after he was first spotted cowering among the leaves on a heat sensor.

McCann, of Harrow, North West London, refused to appear at his Old Bailey trial and didn’t give evidence.

The court was told there was no motivation for his sickening crimes as McCann displayed such “contempt” for his victims he “enjoyed making them suffer”.

McCann was convicted of 10 counts of false imprisonment, seven counts of rape, one count of rape of a child, two counts of causing or inciting a person to engage in sexual activity without consent and seven counts of kidnap.

He was also found guilty of one count of attempted kidnap, three counts of causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity, three counts of assault by penetration, one count of sexual assault and two counts of committing a sexual offence with intent.

The shocking number of victims makes McCann one of the UK’s worst ever sex offenders – just behind Black Cab Rapist John Worboys.

He this year admitted a string of further offences relating to four more women – bringing his total to 16 – but cops fear he may have carried out more than 100 rapes and sexual assaults on women in London.

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: “These were horrendous crimes and we have apologised to the victims for the unacceptable failings in this case.

“We have greatly improved information sharing between prisons and probation officers and all probation staff have received new, mandatory training on when offenders should be recalled.

“We’ve also bolstered frontline staff, with 800 probation officers in training to help keep the public safe.”

The second part of the review is due to be published in the autumn.

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