Chief magistrate Emma Arbuthnot visits alleged serial rapist in prison after he refuses to attend court to hear 21 charges against him over 'sex attack spree'
The judge, plus lawyers, journalists, police officers and court staff, took taxis to Belmarsh, 15 miles away from Westminster Magistrates' Court” Uber or black taxi?
Alleged serial rapist Joseph McCann was visited by a senior judge in jail after he refused to appear in court for a second day.
In an unprecedented move, Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot conducted a hearing at Belmarsh prison, in south-east London, after the 34-year-old refused to leave the cells.
McCann, from Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, is charged with 21 offences against eight alleged victims, aged between 11 and 71.
He is alleged to have carried out the series of sexual assaults in Cheshire, Manchester, Lancashire, London and Hertfordshire between 21 April and 5 May.
McCann was arrested following a nationwide manhunt on Monday after a standoff between police just outside the Cheshire town of Congleton where he was found up a tree.
In the unprecedented move, Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot (pictured above right) conducted a hearing at Belmarsh prison, in south-east London, after alleged rapist Joseph McCann (left) refused to leave the cells.
McCann refused to leave the cells at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Wednesday and today, Prosecutor Tetteh Turkson told the court that McCann was again 'not being co-operative'.
Ms Arbuthnot, also a senior district judge, tried to get him in front of a video link from the jail yesterday morning. But he again refused.
By the afternoon, the judge said she was getting in a taxi to the prison and advised the prosecution, the defence and police officers and court staff, to do the same.
The court crest was brought in an Argos carrier bag and placed on the conference table before Ms Arbuthnot told reporters: 'I will be going into Belmarsh prison to see the defendant, Mr McCann.
'I will be accompanied by the prosecutor, defence counsel and obviously the clerk.
'We will then have a hearing in there, which will be a private hearing, not in the presence of the press.'
As such, Ms Arbuthnot convened a private hearing inside Belmarsh prison, which the press were not allowed to attend.
Outside she told reporters the 'shortish hearing' had been held in the prison's healthcare wing, after walking into the jail an hour and 20 minutes earlier.
Source : Daily Mail.