A man has been sentenced to life imprisonment having been convicted of a series of violent sexual assaults on women in Hastings last year.

Paul Akrofi, of Bohemia Road, Hastings, was sentenced at Lewes Crown Court today.

He will serve a minimum of ten years before being considered for release, and has been recommended for deportation to his native Ghana when he is released.

He is also to be a registered sex offender for life.

Judge Guy Anthony described as Akrofi as "a serial rapist, who preyed on vulnerable women."

Akrofi, 32, was convicted of a total of six counts of offences against three victims.

He sexually assaulted a 36-year-old woman during July last year, convincing her that he was interested in her religion. He was invited back to her home where he subjected her to two sexual assaults in her bed. She had believed he was sleeping in another room.

In the early hours of Saturday morning, September 21, last year, he used physical force to rape a 33-year-old woman on the beach in Hastings, having met her in a town centre bar earlier that night.

Then, on September 26, he befriended a 31-year-old woman after seeing her at a St Leonards church and then meeting her in the town centre.

He persuaded her to drink and go to her address, where he raped her and carried out two other serious sexual assaults before leaving.

One other alleged sexual offence against another women was not proceeded with as the victim did not wish to attend court, and the case was ordered to lay on the court file.

Detective Sergeant Lee Floyd said: "Paul Akrofi systematically targeted his victims, exploiting their mental health vulnerabilities.

"We admire the courage and fortitude of each of the victims, firstly in coming forward and then in giving their evidence in court.

"Once again this shows that such reports are taken very seriously.

"We continue to encourage all to come forward and speak to us in confidence."