June 2022 – Free and now living in Birmingham

April 2010

Rapist is and will always be a danger to all females

A rapist who preyed on women while working as a bar manager has been jailed indefinitely.

Steven Relf, 39, used his job at the Lounge Bar, in Chorlton-cum-Hardy, to target two vulnerable women, before befriending them – and then raping them

Police branded him a “sexual predator” and said he could have had as many as 40 female victims and are urging them to come forward.

US citizen Relf, of Alness Road, Whalley Range, was given an indeterminate sentence at Manchester Crown Court.

Passing sentence, Judge Anthony Gee QC said Relf would have to serve a minimum of four years and 140 days before being eligible for parole.

He said: “You realised they were inebriated and you pursued them and targeted them.”

Relf, who has not worked at the bar since his arrest last September, pleaded guilty to two counts of rape at a previous hearing.

The court was told that Relf served a drink to one of his victims, a middle-aged mother, when she was in the Chorlton bar last July.

She later began to walk around looking for her friend, but remembers a man grabbing her arm.

Her next recollection is of being distressed in a taxi after she had been raped by Relf.

His next victim was a woman who noticed him staring at her while she was in the bar last September.

She moved on to another bar, but later that night she noticed him on the street.

She had been arguing with her boyfriend on the phone when Relf started talking to her and suggested they share a taxi home.

He won her trust so much that he spoke to her boyfriend on the phone and assured him he would look after her.

But he then took her to his home, where he raped her.

Relf was arrested and a DNA sample matched traces on his first victim and he was charged with both sex attacks.

Judge Gee said: “While there is no scientific evidence that the women were drugged, either by you or someone else, it’s quite clear to me, from the evidence available, that they were in a condition, almost certainly brought about by alcohol, that rendered them incapable of consenting.”

Evidence from a third woman helped secure the convictions.

She claimed Relf had raped her in 2005 and her statement was to be used as evidence of his bad character.

Relf was never charged with the 2005 offence, but the woman’s compelling statement led to Relf pleading guilty to two rapes.

In addition to being jailed, he was ordered to sign the Sex Offenders’ Register for life.

He will be placed on licence if he is granted parole at the end of his term.