Manchester paedophile Gregg Smith
Manchester paedophile Gregg Smith has been jailed for 16 yearsGMP/Reuters

Manchester paedophile Gregg Smith has been jailed for 16 years for raping two teenage girls after refusing to give the password to his iPhone where sickening footage of the attacks could have been stored. He had previously been found guilty of what police called "heinous crimes", including four counts of rape and four counts of sexual assault. He was also convicted for refusing to defend himself in court.

His trial heard how on the evening of 17 February 2014, Smith picked up two 14-year-old girls in the Longsight area in his car. He drove them around and plied them alcohol and cigarettes. When one of the girls told him she was 15, he replied: "Age is just a number."

Age is just a number

Smith, 27, from Sale, drove to an isolated location where he told one of the girls she had to get out of the car to smoke a cigarette. Once outside the car, he raped and sexually assaulted the girl. He then drove them both to his garage on Glebe Road, Urmston, and took the same girl he had earlier attacked inside and again raped her. It was only when the victim's friend interrupted the attack and tried to get Smith off the girl that the victim was able to gather her things and flee.

Five months later in July, Smith followed up the attack when he began chatting with a 16-year-old girl as she walked along Stretford Road, Urmston. He asked if she wanted to go with him to "smoke weed", which she agreed to because she thought he was part of a bigger group of friends she had been with earlier.

I will stop when I've finished

He led her to his car repair garage and into the back of a van inside. Having asked her age, he stated that he usually goes for younger girls. He then climbed into the van after her and, once inside, raped her. Smith continued his attack despite repeated pleas from the victim to stop, to which he replied: "I will stop when I've finished."

He even told her that he had "raped 13-year-olds before" during the attack and asked her if she wanted to watch a video of it. Some two hours later, she managed to leave and police were subsequently called. Following a media appeal to locate Smith, a member of the public spotted him sitting on a wall outside a shop in Sale and he was subsequently arrested.

I have raped 13-year-olds before

During the investigation into the rape in February 2014, Smith was arrested and claimed to have had consensual sex with the girl, telling police he believed her to be 16. An iPhone and tablet seized, both of which were either password or passcode protected. Suspecting one or both of these devices may have contained video evidence of the assaults, numerous efforts were made to access and analyse them. Smith refused to cooperate or provide the codes throughout.

Detective Inspector Debbie Oakes, said: "Smith is a repugnant and dangerous individual who has subjected two young girls to appalling sex attacks. He has lured them to his garage before forcing himself on them. It is clear that Smith was well aware of the age and vulnerability of his victims but even with his knowledge of how young they were, he knowingly carried out these horrendous crimes.

"During his heinous crimes, Smith also made distressing and worrying boasts about committing similar offences. If anyone has been affected by this investigation, or have been a victim of rape or sexual assault, then I would urge them to come forward."